ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Tigers, Lions, and Big Cats: Conservation and Breeding From Becoming Extinct

Updated on February 8, 2020
emge profile image

MG is an air warrior and a global traveler who loves to visit and explore new places and trends

India's national animal the Tiger
India's national animal the Tiger


India is one of the nations in the world with the most varied animal life. There are thick jungles and arid deserts to perpetual snow-covered areas with glaciers and one can realize that it is not without meaning to refer to India as a sub-continent. It is indeed a vast land that is home to almost 30,000 species of animals and birds. The animals that interest me the most are the big cats, the lion, tiger, leopard, and panther.

Early History of the Big Cats

Just about 150 years back India was teeming with the big cats. Lions, tigers and other big cats abounded all over India. India then was home to the famous Asiatic lion which roamed in all parts of India. The tiger ruled the roost in most jungles and the other big cats swamped the forests. The lion was found everywhere and there are tales of great warriors killing lions. This shows that the lion roamed all over India. There is a tale of Hari Singh Nalwa who killed a tiger with his bare hands. This shows that the tiger had his habitat in Punjab but now no tigers are available in this state.

White Tiger
White Tiger

The Lion – Just saved

Unlike the tiger which is more sly and cunning, the lion is a simple animal. Over the centuries the tiger adjusted its habitat and life while the lion could not. There was also the indiscriminate slaughter of lions and slowly the lion began to vanish from the Indian scene. Perhaps the great Asiatic lion would have become extinct, but for the efforts of conservationists and the government. After 1947 these worthies realized that the lion was confined only to one part of India. This was the Gir forest n the state of Saurashtra (Gujarat).

A project on a war footing was undertaken under the aegis of the UN. A large forest reserve was created. The wildlife act of 1959 was also passed. It stipulated imprisonment for up to 10 years for killing a protected species. All the big cats came under the purview of “protected species”. Game wardens began to monitor the lions in the Gir Forest reserve and frequent reports on the state of the lion were called for by the central government. The Asiatic lion thus survived and slowly began to breed as well. Many times the game wardens drop live goats and sheep in the reserve as food for the lions.

The lion is now more domesticated and not as wild as he was earlier. This is a drawback. The tourism corporation organizes conducted safaris through the lion reserve and it’s a pleasure to witness the lion just sitting and relaxing, unlike a tiger that will attack at any opportunity.

Which is your favorite big cat ?

See results

Saving the Tiger

In conjunction with WWF, the government launched “Project Tiger”. At one time the population of Tigers in India was over 500,000. This big cat had its habitat spread all over India. The Bengal tiger is the most ferocious. Indiscriminate killing of tigers by the British rulers and the Maharajahs resulted in the Tiger population dwindling alarmingly. Many maharajahs shot more than 500 tigers and kept their heads and skin as souvenirs. They also organized tiger shoots for their British guests.

These sports were banned after 1947 and the tiger population began to stabilize. Presently the tiger is one of the most abundant big cats in India and its habitat ranges are all the regions and forests of the nation.

Other Big Cats

The panther and leopard are protected animals. There are dozens of cases every year where these cats carry away children from villages. One reason is the paucity of animals for them to feed on. The panther and Leopard is native to all parts of India.

However one big cat the Cheetah has become extinct in India. A few are bred in captivity and zoos. But the sun has set on the Cheetah which was mercilessly hunted by the elite of Maharajas and their ilk as a popular sport. This is sad, but a fact.

Laws protect the Animals

The big cats can breathe easily now. The wild life act is very strong and just for killing an animal( protected species) the jail term prescribed is 5 years. Famous film star Salman Khan learned this the hard way when he was sentenced to a five year jail term for killing a black buck.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)