Indochinese tigers are a tiger subspecies, inhabiting of Southeastern Asia, across Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam. Their numbers are dwindling in most of their range, except for Thailand, where their population is said to be higher. This subspecies is smaller than the Bengal and Siberian tigers, but larger than the Sumatran and Malayan tiger.
Table of Contents
Indochinese Tiger Scientific Classification
|Panthera tigris tigris|
Table Of Content
Table of Contents
|Panthera tigris tigris|
Size: Male Indochinese tigers are 8.4-9.4 ft (2.55-2.85 m) long, while females are 7.5-8.4 ft (2.3-2.55 m).
Weight: Males weigh between 331 and 430 lbs (150-195 kg), with females being around 220-290 lbs (100-130 kg).
Color: Black stripes on an orange or golden background, white around the ruff regions and undersides.
|Country||Average Population (Estimated)|
|Cambodia||No more than 30 individuals|
Their historical range also included China, but they have been extirpated from that country.
Indochinese tigers live in tropical rainforests, deciduous, evergreen, subtropical and tropical dry broadleaf forests.
Little is derived about the Indochinese tiger’s behavioral traits because of their elusive and stealthy lifestyle. A few known facts include:
- It is a solitary animal, other than a female with her cubs and mating pairs.
- They are nocturnal, being active during the night and spending most of the day at rest.
- They display territorial characteristics and do not tolerate the appearance of an individual from the same sex within their domain.
Mating & Reproduction
Although they may mate year-round, their peak season is said to be between November and April. The gestation period being for about 3½ months, females give birth to an average of three and a maximum of seven cubs.
The Indochinese babies are born blind and deaf, staying that way for a few days after birth. They spend their juvenile lives with their mother breaking away from her when they’re 18-28 months old.
Female Indochinese tigers reach sexual maturity when they’re about 3.5 years, but males take as long as 5 years.
They have been seen to survive between 15-26 years.
Sounds & Communication
Like all members of the Panthera genus, the Indochinese tiger can roar, because of their elongated larynx and hyoid apparatus besides which, they can also growl, moan, and chuff.
Scent marking and tree scratching are important methods of communication that they use to mark their territories.
Indochinese tigers are obligate carnivores, eating ungulates such as deer, cattle, goats and wild boar.
- The strong hind legs of the Indochinese tiger help them in leaping high jumps, swimming and running at a speed of 60miles an hour, which they retain only for a short span of time.
- Their pelage helps them to stay camouflaged, being unseen by its prey until the final charge.
- Having a powerful eyesight, they can see clearly in the dark without any problem.
- Retractable claws on the tiger’s paws help them climb small trees and holding onto their prey until they get their bites in with their long and strong canine teeth.
- Their tongue has numerous small backward curved protrusions called papillae, helping them in licking meat off a carcass right down to the bone.
As they are the apex predator in their habitat, staying at the top of the food chain, there are no animals that kill the Indochinese tiger in the wild.
IUCN Conservation Status
The Indochinese Tiger is listed under the ‘Endangered’ category of the IUCN Red List.
Why are Indochinese tigers endangered
Relatively constant persecution of the Indochinese tiger across their habitat, whether it is for usage of body parts for ‘medicinal’ or ornamental purposes, has brought the animal down to the brink of extinction. Human encroachment has also destroyed the habitat and its inhabitants.
- Until a few years ago, the Malayan tiger subspecies was regarded the same as the Indochinese tiger. This was corrected in 2004.
- The stripe pattern of each Indochinese tiger is unique, much like human fingerprints, and indeed true of all tiger subspecies.
- Indochinese tigers made up most of the population at the Tiger Temple in Thailand.
- They are even referred to as ‘Corbett’s tiger,’ honoring Jim Corbett’s contribution to conservation.
- The last Indochinese tiger in China was killed and eaten by a villager from the Yunnan Province, who was swiftly handed a 12-year jail sentence.