Siberian or Amur Tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) is the largest tiger with the lightest coloured coat. Its winter coat is shaggy, dense, paler than its summer coat. This is how it survives temperatures as low as -33 degrees C. Its stripes are brown rather than black. Its muzzle is broader and males have a very well developed ruff around their necks, almost like a mane.
Range: The Siberian tiger can be found in uninhabited mountain forests of the Amur Basin to Siberia, and live primarily in coniferous, scrub oak, and birch woodlands of eastern Russia, with a few tigers found in northeastern China and northern North Korea.
Habitat: Tigers can live in a variety of habitats. They do need adequate cover to be able to ambush or stalk their prey, and are therefore usually found in forested areas.
Diet: Tigers usually stalk their prey alone and at night. The maximum kill range for a tiger is 80 feet. To make a kill, the tiger leaps on the animal, biting its neck. It then takes the slain animal to some hidden spot. If it is a large animal, the tiger feeds on it for many days. During this time, the tiger does not kill again. Tigers prey on deer, moose, rabbits, birds, fish, bear, elk, lynx, hares, pigs, cattle, goats, and some smaller animals. The main food of tigers are buffalos, antelopes, and rodents.
Reproduction & Offspring: Young tigers or cubs are born from 100 to 112 days after parents have mated. Usually tiger cubs are born between February and May after a gestational period of three and a half months. The cubs weigh under three pounds at birth and are striped. The cubs' eyes open in 15 to 16 days. a litter consists of 1 to 4 cubs, occasionally up to 6, but only 2 to 3 will survive. The mother is responsible for defending her cubs, while the father hunts for food. Tiger cubs are weaned at 4 to 6 months, but depend on their mother for food and protection for another 2 years; the new males entering a female tiger's territory may kill her her cubs. Cubs learn how to kill at 16 months, and they are on their own at 2 to 3 years. The white ear spots help the mother tigers and cubs to keep track of each other in dim forests at night.
Life span: 10 to 15 years in the wild.
Facts about Siberian Tiger:
- Siberian tigers are the heaviest subspecies at 600 to 700 pounds with the males heavier than the females.
- Most tigers have an orange coat, except for the white tiger.
- Tiger stripes serve as camouflage to hide them from their prey.
- A Siberian tiger's tail is three to four feet long.