TIGER, the largest and most admirable of the cats (Felis tigris). In size and power it surpasses the lion, as it does in beauty, and ex presses the highest type of feline structure. (See FELIDM). The ground color of the body is a bright tawny yellow, bearing black stripes running at right angles with the general axis cif the body and limbs. The under parts and inner aspect of the limbs are white, as also are the throat and chest. On these white parts the stripes are lighter, and gradually merge into the white color. The tail is not tufted at its extremity, and is usually of lighter hue than the body, with dark rings. White or albino varieties of the tiger have been found, as also black ones. The maximum length, including the tail, is about 11 feet, and the largest weigh about 500 pounds. The tiger attains its full development in India, the Bengal variety being the largest and most typical; but it also occurs in southern Siberia, Turkestan, Persia, Java, Sumatra, China and Japan, encountering a range of climate from tropical to sub-arctic conditions. In habits these animals are far more active and agile than the lion, and exhibit a large amount of fierce cunning. They gener ally select the neighborhood of water-courses as their habitat, and spring upon the animals that approach to drink, then drag them to a more retired spot to he devoured. The march of the animal through the thick brushwood of the jungles in which it lives is noiseless and stealthy, and it appears rather to avoid than to court danger, although, when brought to bay, no animal presents a fiercer front than the tiger. Where deer, antelopes and wild hogs are abun dant, domestic animals are comparatively safe, but otherwise the tiger is ready enough to prey on the latter. When pressed by hunger or en feebled by age and incapable of dealing with larger prey, like buffaloes, the tiger prowls around villages, and, having once tasted hurnan flesh, becomes a confirmed cattle-lifter and man-eater, sometimes causing the temporary abandonment of a large distnct by the terror stncken inhabitants; and in several historic in stances districts of country in southern India, Indo-China and the adjacent islands have been deserted premanently because so infested with tigers harbored by neighboring swamps and jungles. The number of persons Icaled by tigers each year in India averages about 930, mostly in Bengal, Madras, Central Provinces, Assam and Burma. About 32,000 head of cattle are
also killed annually in India by tigers.
The natives destroy tigers by traps, pitfalls, spring-guns and poisoned arrows, but the ortho dox method of keeping down their numbers as pursued by Europeans is to employ natives to beat the bush while the game, when started, is shot by the sportsmen seated on elephants. The sport is exciting, but dangerous; for a wounded tiger has been known to spring on an elephant and to inflict serious wounds on the driver and occupants of the howdah, before it could be dispatched. A safer and more com mon method is to tether a live goat, or other wise set a bait in a place where a tiger may be expected, then erect a platform on poles or in a tree near by, and await the animal's aporoach on a night when moon or stars shed light enough to enable the watcher to shoot his prey.
These great cats have always been kept.in captivity by Oriental rulers, and now and then have been completely tamed. They have been a feature of every menagerie and animal trainer's show since such collections began to be formed, and as they readily breed in cap tivity the supply will easily be maintained. Con sult Baker, (Wild Beasts and their Ways) (London 1890) ; Blan ford, (Mammals of India) (ib. 1888) ; Lydekker, R. (The Game Animals of India) (ib. 1907) •, Porter. (Wild Beasts) (New York 1894), and books on sport and travel in India and the East' Indies.
a beetle of the family Cicindelide, in which the head is wider than the thorax, and the terminal hook of the maxil lary jaws is jointed at its base. This insect is swift and active, and preys upon other insects. It is very often found in sandy places and the larvae live in straight deep burrows in the ground. The color varies, corresponding as a rule to the general coloring of the surround ings. This beetle is more common in the trop ics. Over 1,500 species are known, less than 100 of which have been found in the United States. Some species are wingless. See plate accompanying the article INsEcrs.
a name of not very definite signification, sometimes given to those animals of the family Felicia. which are of medium size, and somewhat resemble the tiger in form or markings, such as the chati, margay, serval, etc. In America the ocelot (q.v.) is most often meant. The marbled tiger-cat is a small beau tifully variegated species (Fells marmorata) of the eastern Himalayan region.