Bengal Tigers are known as the most dangerous animals on the planet. This man enters his tigers cage to play with them when he accidentally turns his back and things go terribly wrong.
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The Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) is the most numerous tiger subspecies in Asia, and was estimated at fewer than 2,500 individuals by 2011. Since 2008, it is listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List and is threatened by poaching, loss and fragmentation of habitat. None of the Tiger Conservation Landscapes within its range is considered large enough to support an effective population of more than 250 adult individuals. The tiger arrived in the Indian subcontinent about 12,000 years ago.
India’s tiger population was estimated at 1,706–1,909 individuals in 2010. By 2014, the population had reputedly increased to an estimated 2,226 individuals. Around 440 tigers are estimated in Bangladesh, 163–253 tigers in Nepal and 103 tigers in Bhutan. The Bengal tiger ranks among the biggest wild cats alive today. It is therefore considered to belong to the world’s charismatic megafauna. It is the national animal of both India and Bangladesh.
The Bengal is the traditional type locality for the binomen Panthera tigris, to which the British taxonomist Reginald Innes Pocock subordinated the Bengal tiger in 1929 under the trinomen Panthera tigris tigris. The validity of several tiger subspecies in continental Asia was questioned in 1999. Morphologically, tigers from different regions vary little, and gene flow between populations in those regions is considered to have been possible during the Pleistocene.
Therefore, it was proposed to recognize only two subspecies as valid, namely P. t. tigris in mainland Asia, and P. t. sondaica in the Greater Sunda Islands and possibly in Sundaland. In 2017, the Cat Classification Task Force of the Cat Specialist Group revised felid taxonomy and now recognizes the extinct and living tiger populations in continental Asia as P. t. tigris.
The Bengal tiger is defined by three distinct mitochondrial nucleotide sites and 12 unique microsatellite alleles. The pattern of genetic variation in the Bengal tiger corresponds to the premise that it arrived in India approximately 12,000 years ago. This is consistent with the lack of tiger fossils from the Indian subcontinent prior to the late Pleistocene, and the absence of tigers from Sri Lanka, which was separated from the subcontinent by rising sea levels in the early Holocene.
The Bengal tiger’s coat is yellow to light orange, with stripes ranging from dark brown to black; the belly and the interior parts of the limbs are white, and the tail is orange with black rings. The white tiger is a recessive mutant of the tiger, which is reported in the wild from time to time in Assam, Bengal, Bihar, and especially from the former State of Rewa. However, it is not to be mistaken as an occurrence of albinism. In fact, there is only one fully authenticated case of a true albino tiger, and none of black tigers, with the possible exception of one dead specimen examined in Chittagong in 1846.