International Tiger Day 2014

Tiger cub close-up
Critically Endangered and present nowhere else in the world, there are only an estimated 300 Sumatran tigers left in the wild. Their numbers are declining due to habitat loss, poaching and human-tiger conflict.

To celebrate International Tiger Day 2014, find out more about Sumatran tigers below and what you can do to help.


Sumatran tiger facts

  • There are five tiger subspecies and Sumatran tigers are the smallest.
  • Conservationists estimate that there could be as few as 300 Sumatran tigers left in the wild.
  • Tiger cubs will start hunting from as young as 1 year old, but they’ll stay with their mother until they’re 2 years old.
  • Fossils of tiger remains in China show that tigers could be over 2 million years old!
  • Unlike like most of their cousins, tigers love swimming and will frequently cool off by having a dip in nearby rivers.
  • No two tigers are ever the same; each has its own unique stripe pattern.
  • Sumatran tigers have the narrowest black stripes of any tiger subspecies. This is because they are ambush predators in the Indonesian jungle and need to blend in amongst the thick vegetation.
  • Tigers are excellent jumpers. Even when sitting down, a tiger can leap forward 10 metres!
  • Tigers have five different types of whiskers on their body. These whiskers pick up on vibrations their prey makes when moving through the jungle.


What are ZSL doing?

The Critically Endangered Sumatran tiger is one of those species most vulnerable to the social and economic changes currently occurring in Indonesia.

The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is working in two main areas, Berbak National Park on the east coast of Sumatra and the Dangku corporate Conservation Complex in the south. We are developing sustainable livelihoods for local communities, designing REDD schemes to protect peat forests from destruction, and increasing community involvement and anti-poaching capacity to protect tigers.

Find out more


How can you help?

1. Donate to the Zoological Society of London and help us secure a future for Sumatran tigers in the wild. 

Donate online now


2. Take part in one of our unique challenge events and raise vital funds for ZSL's global tiger conservation. Dare to bare all with a naked run around ZSL London Zoo this August in our unique Streak for Tigers event.

Register for Streak for Tigers 


3. Help us raise awareness of the plight of the Sumatran tiger. Share this page to your Facebook page or tweet us @OfficialZSL with #TigerDay

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