Indochinese Tiger

Name:  Indochinese Tiger
Scientific name:  Panthera tigris corbetti
Range:  Thailand, Southern China, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam andMalaysia.
Habitat:  Forests in hilly and mountainous terrain.
Status:  Endangered:  probably only a few hundred animals in thewild
Diet in the wild:  Grassland ungulates, wild pigs, cattle anddeer. 
Diet in the zoo: Carnivore diet.
Location at the Zoo: Asian Falls

Physical description.
Males are much larger than females, and have more conspicuous cheekwhiskers.  Males are 8'5"-9'4" long (excluding the tail) andweigh 370-430 pounds.  Females are 7'7" - 8'8" long and weighunder 300 pounds.  Black stripes on a reddish-ochre ground, with whitethroat, facial patches and belly.  Stripes are narrow.  Body color isa little lighter than that of the Sumatran tiger, which is the darkest of thetigers, and the striping at the front of the body is reduced.  In additionsome stripes break up into a row of spots. Compare theSumatran (right) and Indochinese (left) patterns below:

Indochinese Tiger

Sumatran Tiger
The continued existence of all tigers is precarious.  There are fiveliving tiger subspecies, three of which are exhibited at the Fort WorthZoo: Bengal(a white variant),Sumatranand Indochinese.  The other two living subspecies are the Siberian or Amurtiger (of which there are only a few hundred living animals), the South Chinatiger, which is considered to be similar to the ancestral tiger and which isdesperately endangered, with only a few dozen survivors.  The Bali,Caspian and Javan tigers are recently extinct. 

In the wild, theSumatran and Indochinese tigers you can see at the zoo may be represented byfewer than 1000 animals.  All tigers are now protected, but habitatdestruction and the loss of the larger herbivores needed to sustain these largepredators may have pushed them beyond their ability to recover.  Inaddition the naive human belief that we can take on the power and potency ofthese magnificent animals by consuming their body parts has driven them closeto absolute extinction.

Social Organization:

Tigers are shy, nocturnal and solitary.  Each adult male has a territory that includes the territories of several females, whose reproductive status they can assess by investigating the female scent marks. 

Males and females find one another by calling, and stay together only long enough for courtship and mating.  The female raises one to three cubs and teaches them to hunt.  Cubs join their mothers for hunting when they are about six months old, and begin to hunt independently at about a year and a half.

Young females establish their own territories near their mothers when theyare two or three years old, while males leave the maternal territory to trytheir luck with a group of new females. 

Tigers move well on land, but also swim readily and may bathe or sit in waterto cool off.  The stripes are effective camouflage in a grassland or brushforest environment, and also break the outline of the body on simplerbackgrounds.  Their sense of smell is highly developed; tigers canidentify individual humans by their scent alone. 
Hunting Practices: 
Tigers actively stalk their prey and then attack using a swift rush fromcover.    They usually kill by clamping the throat of large preywith their powerful jaws and long teeth.  Females will allow cubs toprecede them at a kill. 
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Page Authors:  Andy Neal and Rob Schindlbeck
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