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Where do most tigers live?
Most tigers live in the United States. Ironically, it is hard to consider tigers to be wild animals any more and here is why.
A hundred years ago, there were about 40,000 tigers in India. Today there are between 2,500 and 5,000. Even more troubling is the fact that according to some scientists there are only between 5,000 and 7,500 wild tigers left alive on Earth.
On the other side, there are supposed to be 4,000 tigers kept as private pets in Texas state alone. The American Zoo and Aquarium Association reports that as much as 12,000 tigers are living in captivity in the United States.
Just to throw in a name, Mike Tyson personally owns 4 tigers. America’s huge tiger population is rooted in legislation. Only 19 states have banned the practice of the private ownership of tigers, other 15 require only a license, and 16 states don't regulate the field at all.
Tigers are not a very expensive commodity, either. $3,500 can easily buy you a pair of Bengal tigers and a fashionable blue-eyed tiger usually costs no more than $15,000.
Behind this trend we find the success of breeding programs at American zoos and circuses. Also, an abundance of cubs in the '80s and '90s lowered the prices greatly. (Anyway, cubs are priced around $1,000 today.)
According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals there are half a thousand tigers, lions and other big cats in private property in the Houston area alone.
Wild tiger populations were greatly reduced during the 20th century. Tigers became extinct around the Caspian Sea by the '50s, and the tigers on the islands of Bali and Java died out between the '40s and the '70. The South China tiger has almost completely disappeared in the wild.
In spite of all the efforts of conservationists, all tiger species are expected to die out in the wild by the end of the our century.
- A domestic cat is about 1 percent the size of a tiger.
- Tigers can't stand the smell of alcohol. They will savage anyone who has been drinking.
- Tigers fade as they get older, and who can blame them.