While you pet your purring and mewing kittens, sitting on your couch at home, have you ever thought that their ferocious big brothers are living over there in the forests, growling, groaning and marking their territories in rage?
And even thought, that your furry kitten was also once a ferocious creature, up to being a Man-eating beast years ago?!
Yes!! It’s a fact that, even your little cuties on your lap behaving innocently now were also exactly correspondent to them hundreds of years back, before they were domesticated!
And now, no worries!! Keeping your chonky fellow with you on your lap itself, you can keep reading this article about their big brothers who are still living over there in the brush woods!
They are tigers!!
And more specifically, today you will learn many amazing facts on a very rare kind of a tiger and they are rare so much that, only 1 out of 10,000 tigers will come upon under this category.
They are White Tigers!
Let’s tiptoe into the white tigers’ territory…!!
And at the end of the article, we will be able to figure it out exactly, whether they are really albinos, bleached or something else!! And until then…, we never know..!!!
An overview to the white tiger
White tigers are a carnivorous specie who belong to mammalian class. Usually, a white Bengali tiger grows up to a height of 70 to 120 cm and weighs 140 to 300 kg (309lbs – 660lbs). Their life span leads 10 to 20 years under natural circumstances.
They are scientifically known as Panthera tigris tigris and they are also known by folks in different names such as Bengal while tiger, bleached tiger and Albion tiger as well. However, being deviated from the ordinary orange Bengal tigers, these white tigers have dark brown/ black strips on its white fur coat vertically. And instead of the green or the yellow color eyes inherited by the regular Bengali tigers, they have very charming bright blue eyes.
Unfortunately, though we find this white color a gift, for this creature, this has made it difficult to camouflage. Nevertheless, paying off this defect, the nature has made them capable of doubling in a speed of 60 miles per hour. And they are known to be more muscular and a lot aggressive than the regular orange Bengali tigers. Further, as they are good swimmers as well, they have been able to cross any boundary in their habitats, despite the discrimination of the appearance inherited by the Mother Nature.
Their lifestyle and any fun facts?
Well, White tigers are the second largest specie in the family of tigers and they are a kind of a solitary specie who love living alone. On one hand, this has been a major reason for them being hunted easily. However, being at the top of the food chain, they victimize animals such as cattle, deer and wild boar. And they have a very good vision that they use to hunt at night and they have a good hearing ability as well which helps them in hunting.
However, they mark their territories with urine and by leaving their claw marks on every possible landmark. And their territories expand up to 75 squares of miles and there is a little possibility to overlap two male territories as they tend to defend their space aggressively. Nevertheless, it is bit different in terms of the female territories that it does overlap with them. However, when it comes to mating, the white tigers are sexually matured around four to five years but the tigresses take only three to four years in terms of that. The little white tigers are also called cubs as usual and a white tigress gives birth to around 5 cubs in a single parturition.
Are they allowed to be domesticated?
Similarly to your little kitten on your lap, white tigers are not meant to be domesticated. It is simply because they are an endangered species who cannot be grown in a domestic environment in a little space. And it requires pounds of meat per a single day and the possible damage it can make to human lives in an urban area is unbelievable. Moreover, they need acres of lands for living its natural lifestyle and even by the law, it is highly prohibited petting or keeping a white tiger under a personal custody. But no worries, even though they are limited to the Indian subcontinent, they are available in zoos all over the world by now for you to visit but unfortunately, in a limited count.
Are they really Albinos, Bleached or Something else?
In simple terms, the white tigers are NOT ALBINOS!
And they are not even a separate kind of a specie. They are also Bengali tigers but the cause behind this white fur coat of them is lack of pigment pheomelanin which is available in regular Bengali tigers, making them orange. And this is a result of a genetic scenario which occurs consequently by the amalgamation of two tigers who carry recessive genes that determine the color of the fur coat.
And as per the general acceptance, the white tigers have been lucky enough to draw the attention of the mankind drastically among the rest of the other orange colored tigers, due to its remarkably different fur coat!
But, before jumping into conclusions, let me spill the beans!
A hundred years ago, the number of wild white tigers were over 100,000 and today, the situation is much pathetic that by 2020, the world has only 200 white tigers entirely!
It’s a decrease of 99.8%!!
The most humiliating factor is that, tigers are on the top of their food chain and so are the white tigers. Therefore, no predators found and the only predator found is the HUMAN! Unfortunately since the last recorded white tiger in a forest was shot in 1958 by a hunter, no white tigers have been recorded in the forests until now and therefore, in case that you want to see a white tiger, the only place left is the zoo by today.
Therefore, the term “have been lucky enough” holds no meaning here!
And until you visit a white tiger in a zoo one day,
Now, back to your kitten!!
Soft Kitty, Warm Kitty,
Little ball of fur,
Happy Kitty, Sleepy Kitty,
Purr, Purr, Purr…!!!