Indian Tiger » White Tiger » Snow White Tiger
Tiger, Ranthambore Tiger Reserve

Snow White Tiger

Snow White TigerThe elusive snow white tiger is truly a cat of many faces! Artistically "snow white tiger" has been used in reference to the coat pattern of the white Bengal tiger. In more serious texts the term has been used to identify the most well known snow inhabiting tiger - the Siberian or Amur tiger. In some older references, almost any large cat might be referred to as a tiger, so depending on the source it's also possible that "snow tiger" could apply to the Snow Leopard as well. To make this truly confusing, avalanches of snow are also sometimes referred to as snow tigers, a tribute to just how fierce and deadly an avalanche (or a tiger) can be. So if your travel agent slips a snow tiger in to your vacation agenda, you better make sure you know what kind of tiger you're getting!

Distribution: Originally widespread, tigers were found in a very diverse variety of habitats: savannah, mangroves and temperate, coniferous and tropical rain forests. They require sufficient cover, year-round access to water, and a steady supply of suitable large prey. Their former distribution was from eastern Turkey and Transcaucasia through India and Indo-China to the Indonesian islands Java and Bali. There is no evidence to suggest that they inhabited the Tibetan plateau, but they do live in the foothills of the Himalayas, usually below 1,300 metres but occasionally higher and have killed domestic animals at 2,700 metres. One was seen at 3,960 metres. Amur or Siberian tigers live at 1,200 metres and descend in winter.

Habitat: A snow white tiger's territory depends on the amount of food available, and usually ranges from about 10 to 30 square miles. Siberian tigers sometimes have really big territories (up to 120 square miles). Although tigers usually live alone, territories can overlap. A male tiger's domain usually overlaps those of several female tigers.

Diet: The main prey animals of snow white tigers in India are deer, buffalo, wild pigs, porcupines and langur monkeys. If they have the opportunity they will kill wolves, young rhinoceros, young elephant and even leopards. As a very large solitary carnivore, a tiger regards all animals it encounters as potential food.

Snow White TigerA snow white tiger is able to kill a full grown adult bull gaur, and yet can be killed by a wild boar and wild dogs. Rotting flesh and birds are also eaten by tigers and occasionally they supplement their diets with fruit. Like domestic cats, snow white tigers eat grass in order to improve their digestion.

A female must kill approximately every eight days, and when lactating or producing milk, every five days or so.

Reproduction & Offspring: Female tigers reach maturity when they are 3 years old, when she is ready to mate she signals her readiness with scent markings and loacting roars. The brief act of copulation continues for a five day period as tigers require frequent copulation to become pregnant. In warm climates the female may be on heat throughout the year, wheras in colder climates she comes into heat only seasonally. The average tiger litter is normally 2/3 cubs (largest 5), One unfortunatly dies at birth. Tiger cubs are born blind and weigh only about 2/3 pounds, depending on the subspecies. They live on their mother's milk for 6-8 weeks before being taken to kills to feed. They begin making their own kills at about 18 months of age.

Life span: The life span of a Tiger in the wild is about 10 to 15 years. In Zoos they tend to live to between 16 and 20 years old.

Conservation status: Tigers are classified by IUCN (the World Conservation Union) as endangered and they are protected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES) which came into force in 1975 to regulate the trade in endangered wildlife. From the beginning all tigers (except the Amur) were listed on Appendix 1, which bans international trade in tigers and their body parts. In 1986 this protection was extended to the Amur tiger.

Snow White TigerAbout the species: White tigers are neither albinos nor a special species. They differ from the normally colored tigers by having blue eyes, a pink nose, and creamy white fur with black stripes. If they were albinos they would have pink eyes and a lighter nose color. A tigers stripes are just like human fingerprints meaning that no two tigers have the same pattern of stripes. White tigers aren't necessarily born from other white tigers. White tigers get their color by a double recessive allele. A Bengal tiger with two normal alleles or one normal and one white allele is colored orange. Only a double dose of the mutant allele results in white tigers.

The first recorded white tigers:
The first white tiger to be captured was not, as is often claimed, the famed Mohan. There were several captures and a large number of sightings (and shootings) prior to this. For instance, in one of the earliest records a white tiger was displayed at Exeter Change in 1820.

Shootings were common between 1892 and 1922 in places like Orissa, Upper Assam, Bilaspur, Cooch Behar and Poona. Between the 1920s and 1930s fifteen white tigers were killed in the region of Bihar alone. Some of these trophies were placed on display in the Calcutta Museum. (Incidentally, this is the ninth oldest regular museum in the world).

Indian Tiger Suggested Tour Indian Tiger Suggested Tour Indian Tiger Suggested Tour
Indian Tiger Suggested Tour
  Bengal Tiger with Taj Mahal (13 D)
  India Tiger Tour (20 D)
  India Tiger & Rhino Tour (14 D)
  India Tiger Tour (20 D)
[ ... more]
Indian Tiger Suggested Tour
Indian Tiger Suggested Tour Indian Tiger Suggested Tour Indian Tiger Suggested Tour
Wild Cats : African Golden Cat      |      Andean Mtn Cat      |      Asian Golden Cat      |      Bay Cat      |      Black-footed Cat      |      Bobcat
Tiger Around the Globe : African Tiger      |      Asian Tiger      |      Indo-Chinese Tiger      |      Siberian Tiger      |      South China Tiger
Home   |  Your Suggestion  |  Contact Us  |