About Tigers

Known worldwide for its distinctive stripes and imposing size, the tiger (Panthera tigris) is one of the most iconic wildlife species in existence. While tigers are ubiquitous in music, sports and on our screens, they are much rarer in the wild and hovering close to extinction with only 4,500 remaining. But tiger habitat remains, giving us hope for a dramatic recovery if we rally behind tigers and protect them from poachers. 

Securing A Viable Future For Tigers

Read here to learn what six NGOs (including Panthera) which support the Global Tiger Initiative and Global Tiger Recovery Program suggest must be done to strengthen tiger conservation and protect these big cats across their range.

The Largest Big Cat

The biggest tigers are typically found in India and Russia.

© Steve Winter

Unique Stripe Patterns

Every tiger has a unique stripe pattern that helps to identify individuals.

© Steve Winter/National Geographic

Powerful Swimmers

Tigers can thrive in wet environments like mangrove swamps.

© Nitish Madan

Close to Extinction

Just 4,500 tigers remain in the wild.

© Karin Saucedo

Our Goals

Increase tiger numbers at key sites across 
their range

Measure the effectiveness of
our efforts

Better understand 
tiger dispersal
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1,000+

rangers and conservation practitioners trained

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Eight

sites with evidence of stable or growing tiger populations

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Advances

in PoacherCam, intel storage and tracking and field forensics

Our Impact

Where Do Tigers Live?

Tigers live mainly in the forests of tropical Asia, though they also roam colder climates like those in the Russian Far East. They currently exist in 10 countries, including Thailand, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal, India, China and Russia.

  • Historic Tiger Range
  • Current Tiger Range

SPECIAL PROJECT

Tigers Forever

Learn More
© Panthera/DNP/WCS

Tiger FAQs

Question

Why do tigers have stripes?

Answer

Tigers’ stripes allow them to blend into their environment and sneak up on prey. Since each stripe pattern is unique, we can use camera traps to figure out how many tigers make up a population and to track their specific movements and activities.

Question

What do tigers eat and how do tigers hunt?

Answer

Tigers prefer wild pigs, deer and wild cattle (including gaur, which can weigh up to 3,300 lbs!) across their habitats. They also opportunistically hunt birds, fish, rodents, insects and reptiles in addition to other mammals like primates and porcupines. Tigers usually hunt during morning and evening when their prey are most active, stalking prey and then ambushing them with an explosive burst of energy.

Question

Do tigers purr or roar?

Answer

Tigers cannot purr continually. Instead, they can roar thanks to unique modifications of the larynx and an elastic hyoid structure. Tigers are also known to chuff, which is a non-threatening vocalization they use to communicate between themselves.

Question

How many cubs do tigers have? How long do cubs stay with their mother?

Answer

Tigers usually have litters of two to five cubs. After three to five months, the cubs are weaned off their mother’s milk. By 18 to 24 months they are fully independent. Males disperse widely and females tend to stay closer to their mother’s territory.

Question

What threats do tigers face?

Answer

Poaching for the illegal wildlife trade and habitat loss have driven the great decline in tigers over the last century. Tigers are illegally killed for their body parts, which are usually sold for use in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Tigers are also threatened by overhunting of prey species and killings in retaliation to attacks on livestock or people.

Question

What does Panthera do to protect tigers?

Answer

Panthera protects tigers by preventing poaching and disrupting the illegal wildlife trade, the cat’s greatest threats. In partnership with national governments and local communities, we train anti-poaching rangers to safely and effectively deter and respond to poaching incidents and give them the equipment they need to accomplish this dangerous job. We work with local judiciary members to increase prosecutions and penalties for members of the criminal syndicates who are devastating tiger habitats. By advocating for expanded or new protected areas, we are increasing the size and connectivity of key tiger habitats. We also support sustainable livelihoods for local communities to reduce their dependence on unsustainable resource extraction (like prey hunting and wood harvesting) from tiger habitats.

Ensure their tomorrow with your gift today.

© Nitish Madan