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For years, people have had mixed feelings about tigers. Some feared them, while others worshiped them as sacred animals. Up till now, people avoid meeting tigers and want to bear resemblance with them at the same time. We understand that tigers, despite their tremendous force, need our protection, as some subspecies are being pushed towards extinction.
Tigers are gracious and proud creatures that have been fascinating people with their beauty and greatness for years. They are strong, fast, and fearless. They are the largest Felidae species (which we call ‘cats’) in the world. One may argue that the largest ones are ligers, the hybrids of a tigress and a male lion, but the latter are only bread by humans. Unlike lions, tigers are not too egocentric. For example, male tigers let cubs and tigresses eat first. Tigers rarely fight for food and wait for their turn, which shows their high level of socializing.
People often mistakenly think that the only thing that differs a tiger from a cat is their size. There are several interesting peculiarities of tigers that are not intrinsic to Fluffies and Kitties living in our homes. First of all, eye pupils of tigers are round, as opposed to the vertical ones of cats. This is explained by the fact that tigers prefer to prey early in the morning or at twilight. Cats, in turn, are often called night creatures. Contrary to a popular believe both tigers and cats cannot see in complete darkness, though they find their way better than humans. Although many cats like water or at least get interested when it drops from the tap, the majority of them are terrified of bathing. Tigers love swimming, and they can do it really well. Cats are much better at procuring food than tigers. If they cannot prey it, they can procure it from humans. Tigers fail nine out of ten attacks, so they are used to live without food for several weeks. Tigers and cats drink water in different ways. Cats lap liquid, moving their tongues like a scoop. Tigers throw water up and catch it. Finally, tigers cannot purr. When they feel satisfied, they simply close their eyes in delight. So, we can see that tigers are unique even compared to their closest relatives and no other animal can replace them.
Like any other predators, tigers seem dangerous to people. Their paws can knock a bear or a horse off their feet. The movements of a tiger are very smooth. Besides, it can move silently. Like a true predator, it has excellent vision. Tigers are great jumpers and climbers. It seems like their fiery red skin crossed with black stripes reflects their temper. This skin, however, has become one of the main reasons why many tiger species are threatened with extinction. Another reason is the traditional Tiger Hunt, which was the favorite entertainment for rich people in India and some other countries. The major living species today are the Siberian tiger, the Bengal tiger, the Sumatran tiger, the Indochinese tiger, and the South China tiger. We have already lost three species completely. These are the Caspian tiger, the Javan tiger, and the Bali one. This may be surprising but all the tigers hunted to extinction could be seen in their habitat in the first half of the 20th century. So, it does not take a specimen a lot of time to disappear from the face of the earth.
Regardless of the fact that people have become more aware that tigers are in imminent danger, more and more species get killed every day. Why is it so and how can society solve this problem? It has been mentioned that poachers kill tigers for their skin. Tigers’ meat is also used in traditional medicine in some countries, so here is another reason why the number of animals is decreasing. Sometimes, locals stand for tiger hunting. It may seem cruel of them, but one should look below the surface. It is very convenient to protect tigers from a considerable distance. There are plenty of organizations today that have the headquarters in the major cities. Only the bravest ones dare to visit the natural habitat of the Siberian or an Indochinese tiger, for example. But people who actually live there and literary have to cross paths with predators may have a slightly different opinion of their importance for the humankind.
The problem lies in in the governments’ incapacity to provide tigers (that they are supposed to protect) with everything they need. Above all, this is an area issue. Today’s tigers should live in wildlife sanctuaries. This will reduce the number of attacks on people. Secondly, a tiger should have enough to eat. In nature, a tiger will only attack a human being if it is starving, there are no natural prey species around, or it feels the threat. Besides, a tiger will not attack you if you are looking at it. It may be stated that these animals like the element of surprise and they lose their interest when they get noticed. Actually, this saves a lot of people who are forced to cross the areas of tiger hunting. They just wear masks on the back of their heads to prevent tigers from attacking them from behind. While locals invent the ways of not being killed by a tiger in the forest, the authorities have to minimize the possibility of meeting a hungry beast in the areas where people live. The methods may include the support of animal protection organizations, educating people about the necessity of saving the wildlife and making sure that the appropriate laws are fully obeyed.
It has been long noticed that tigers can easily adapt to any surrounding conditions. It does not matter whether it is the forest, the jungle, the mountains, or the plains. There are only two things that these animals cannot adapt to – the deliberate butchering by people and hunger. As far as we consider ourselves to be the most intelligent species on the planet, we should join all the efforts together, thus preventing tigers and other over-exposed animals from total extinction.