With sharp teeth, strong jaws and agile bodies, tigers are spectacular creatures. They’re loved by many, featuring in childhood story books, movies and family theatre shows - but how well do we really know these magnificent beasts? Unless you study tigers in the wild it can be hard to know their true characters and personalities. But here’s a quick summary of how they interact and communicate with one another. It truly is fascinating.
Tigers are solitary animals. This means they like to live alone (with the exception of a mother and her cubs). For this reason, they’re often required to make sounds that can be heard for miles. Roaring, for instance, can be used to attract a mate. Male tigers can smell when a female tiger is in season and will roar for attention. Females also roar when they’re looking for a male. A roar can also be used by females to call her cubs or by a male when they take down prey.
What’s really interesting is that tigers can also create a sound that’s inaudible to the human ear. While humans can hear frequencies from 20 hertz to 20,000 hertz, tigers can produce ‘infrasounds’ lower than 20 hertz. This can permeate buildings, cut through dense forest and even pass through mountains and is another form of long distance communication.
Tigers also make a chuffing noise which consists of a soft ‘brrrr.’ This sound is used as a greeting between tigers and can only be heard at a close range.
Like a household cat, tigers also use their tails to showcase feelings. If a tiger is relaxed, their tail will probably hang loose. If they’re feeling aggressive, their tail might swish from side to side quickly. A tiger with a low hung tail that twitches intensely is also highly irritated by something. When tigers are in a bad mood they can also twist back their ears.
Scent and Touch
When a female tiger is in heat, she’ll make smelly secretions to find a mate. Male and female tigers also mark their territorial boundaries by spraying urine. This has a strong scent that can last up to 40 days. Tigers also use faeces to indicate their presence in an area and to mark territories.
Interestingly, each tiger also has a unique smell. Odours are released by scent glands that can be found between the toes, anus, head, chin, lips, cheeks and facial whiskers. The scent glands between a mother tiger’s toes are designed to leave a trail that her little cubs can follow. Tigers also like to rub their cheeks on trees or the ground to mark their territory.
Tigers communicate with one another in an array of verbal and non verbal ways, just like human beings. If you and your family love these incredible creatures, then don’t forget to book your tickets to see The Tiger Who Came to Tea. Theatre tickets for children’s shows are available now with family theatre tickets being sold at a competitive price.