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Easily recognizable by its black-striped red fur, the Tiger is the largest wild feline and one of the largest land carnivores. This enormous feline has a longer body than the Lion, making it appear much more massive.
Tiger Coloring Pages
The Tiger is, with the Lion, one of the two large species of the genus Felis (Felidae). The Tiger differs little from the Lion in its skeleton.
Still, on the outside, it is easily distinguished by the absence of mane in the male and its coat of a beautiful golden fawn with black stripes interrupted and vertical on the head, body, and tail where they form incomplete rings.
It is one of the most fearsome carnivores, although it does not climb trees: it watches for its prey on the lookout and carries or drags it away, squeezed between its jaws, whatever its weight.
In Siberia, it feeds mainly on wild boars; in India and Malaysia, it hunts antelope, deer, buffalo, and the young of all domestic animals. The peacock is one of its favorite treats. He is not afraid to attack humans themselves, especially isolated women and children, whom he comes to take away from the threshold of their homes. In India, Tigers up to 3 m long, with only 86 cm for the tail.
See also: butterfly coloring pages
There are currently six subspecies of Tigers: the Royal Tiger or Bengal Tiger (Panthera tigris Tigris), Siberian Tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), South China Tiger (Panthera tigris amoyensis), Indochina Tiger (Panthera tigris corbetti), Malaysian Tiger (Panthera tigris jacksoni) and Sumatran Tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae). The Caspian Tiger (Panthera tigris virgata), the Bali Tiger (Panthera tigris balica), and the Java Tiger (Panthera tigris sondaica) are subspecies that disappeared during the 20th century.
Today highly threatened with extinction, the Tigers are found only in a few scattered islets over an immense territory that gives an idea of the extent of the Tiger’s historical range.
If we look back only a few decades, we can see that the Tiger’s range includes a region that is larger than Europe in extent; the Tiger is found from 8° south latitude, at 52° or 53°. The northern limit of its distribution is beyond the latitude of Berlin.
Still, it must be remembered that the climate of Siberia is quite different and much colder than that of Europe, so fortunately influenced by the Gulf Stream. The Tigris stopped, in the west, at the southern edge of the western Caucasus; in the east, at the Pacific Ocean; in the south, at Java and Sumatra; in the north, at southern Siberia, or Lake Baikal.
The Tiger inhabited mainly the Indies, from where it rose through Tibet, Persia, and the steppes that separate India, China, and Siberia to Mount Ararat in western Armenia. It extended far beyond Mount Suleiman, situated south of Kabul.
It was everywhere in the mountainous and forested parts of the Mazandaran province on the southern shore of the Caspian Sea. From there, it reached the southern points of the Aral Sea, from where it went northeastward to Lake Seisang, and eastward from Lake Baikal to Manchuria and Korea. It was found throughout most of China, except in the upper parts of Mongolia or the arid plains of Afghanistan. The islands of the Indonesian archipelago were free of it, except for Java and Sumatra.
A few stray or scattered tigers, however, went far beyond these limits. Tigers have also been found as far as the western coast of the Caspian Sea, in the steppes between the Irtysh and Ischim rivers in the Altai, and even in Irkutsk on the Lena River.