Indian Tiger also called the Royal Bengal Tiger is the national animal of India. This huge majestic animal is the essence of Indian wildlife symbolising the wilds of the Indian sub-continent. The Indian Tiger is a subspecies of a tiger native to India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan living in swamps, deserts, grasslands, and forests. It is the most numerous of the all the tiger subspecies. India has an estimated population of about 1,411, 200 in Bangladesh, 155 in Nepal and 67–81 in Bhutan.
Physical Characteristics: A full grown male tiger measures up to 270–310 cm, females 240–265 cm. They grow to a height of 90–110 cm (from the shoulder). The males weigh an average weight of 221.2 kg (487.7 lb), females 139.7 kg (308 lb). They reach maturity after 3-4 years from birth. Their lifespan is about 10 to 15 years. Their fur is yellow to light orange in colour lined with dark brown to black stripes and their tail is white with black circular rings. The white tiger is a mutation of the Bengal subspecies. Black tigers have also been sighted in the country. Their black fur is lined with yellow or white stripes and some are even plain black. The roar of the Bengal tiger are so loud that it can by heard as far as 3 kms away.
General Information: The Indian tigers are agile, fast runners and able climbers. They are the largest among all the cat family and the fastest running animal. They can jump to a height of 32 feet and swim up to 18 miles. They are pure carnivore and eat animals like deer, water buffalo, wild pigs, small mammals which they easily kill with their strong teeth. They can eat up to 40 pounds at a time which lasts them for days.
The Indian tiger usually mate between November and April. Their gestation period is 103 days. The mothers give birth to 2-5 cubs at a time and continue to feed them till they reach 1.5 years after which the chubs start hunting on their own.
In India, Bengal tigers can be seen at Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh, Corbett National Park in Uttaranchal, Kanha National Park in Madhya Pradesh, Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan, Sariska Wildlife Sanctuary in Rajasthan, Sunderbans National Park in West Bengal, Bandipur & Nagarhole National Park in Karnataka, Dudhwa National Park in Uttar Pradesh and Manas Tiger Reserve in Assam.