Animal picture of the day: the world's biggest cat

Jeremy Hance
mongabay.com
February 07, 2013



A month old male giraffe born at Zoological Society of London (ZSL) Whipsnade Zoo's. Photo courtesy of ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.
An eighteenth-month-old Amur tiger, named Botzman, was recently moved from a zoo in Moscow to Zoological Society of London (ZSL) Whipsnade Zoo. Photo courtesy of ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.

The Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), also known as the Siberian tiger, is the world's biggest cat. An adult male weighs on average about 390 pounds (176 kilograms). The largest yet recorded weighed 460 pounds (207 kilograms), although there are reports of considerably larger animals in the past. Top predators, not surprisingly, in the forests of the Russian Far East, Amur tigers are considered Endangered by the IUCN Red List.

Today only around 350-400 Amur tigers survive in the wild, but that's up from a low of about 50. The tigers have been hard by habitat loss, prey decline due to overhunting from humans, and poaching for tiger parts, which are used in traditional medicine in China. Numerous conservation programs are working on the ground to keep the massive animal from vanishing for good. The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is currently running a program in Lazovsky State Nature Reserve.

Amur tigers are one of six surviving subspecies of tiger.



Botzman. Photo courtesy of ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.
Botzman. Photo courtesy of ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.



Botzman. Photo courtesy of ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.
Botzman. Photo courtesy of ZSL Whipsnade Zoo.








CITATION:
Jeremy Hance
mongabay.com (February 07, 2013).

Animal picture of the day: the world's biggest cat.

http://news.mongabay.com/2013/0207-hance-big-cat-pod.html