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Kidadl Team

AUGUST 05, 2021

Sumatran Tiger Facts You’ll Never Forget

Sumatran tiger facts for kids are exciting!

Sumatran tigers are a Critically Endangered tiger species with 400 or so tigers left in the wild on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia. Sumatran tigers live in the dense tropical rainforests of Sumatra. They are the smallest of the tiger subspecies and are recognized by their larger mane and a darker coat of orange fur. Sumatran tiger adaptations have helped them in becoming the apex predator of Sumatra as they have had to hunt and survive on the island after they were left stranded by rising sea levels. The Sumatran tiger life span can differ on the basis of their habitats, in the wild they can live up to 15-20 years, and in captivity, up to 25 years. The Sumatran tiger has a diet that consists of deers, wild boar, fish, monkeys, and birds. They are adept at hunting and are great stalkers.

The cause of them being endangered is mostly because of human activities like deforestation, illegal poaching, expansion of humans into greater parts of the forest for agricultural and living purposes. Sumatran tigers are a critical part of the ecosystem of Sumatra and their conservation and protection are a priority for the Indonesian government. Hopefully, with better protection and protected breeding in good breeding facilities, these majestic creatures never reach the brink of extinction and continue to play a part in the ecosystem.

If you like these facts about the Sumatran tigers then you'll surely like these facts about the South China tiger and serval too!

Sumatran Tiger Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Sumatran Tiger?

Sumatran tigers are the smallest of the tiger species. They are apex predators and are carnivorous with an extremely stealthy approach while hunting.

What class of animal does a Sumatran tiger belong to?

Sumatran tigers belong to the mammal class. Mammals are vertebrate animals with the presence of mammary glands in the females that produces milk for feeding the young ones, a neocortex (region of the brain), fur or hair, and three middle ear bones.

How many Sumatran tigers are there in the world?

An estimated 400 or so Sumatran tigers are left in the wild. The IUCN Red List lists them as Critically Endangered. Ulu Masen, the Leuser Ecosystem, and the Kerinci Seblat National Park are global areas of priority for tiger conservation.

Where does a Sumatran tiger live?

Sumatran tigers are critically endangered species of tigers that live on the Indonesian Island of Sumatra.

What is a Sumatran tiger's habitat?

The Sumatran tiger habitat includes mostly lowland forests to mountain forests with some living in tropical evergreens, forests, peat swamps, and freshwater swamp forests. Approximately 100 of them are thought to inhabit Kerinci Seblat National Park and other lesser-known national parks and protected areas.

Who do Sumatran tigers live with?

Sumatran tigers, like all other tigers, are solitary animals, the mother and her cubs being the only exception. They do not patrol their territory but do mark them with urine and feces to let other tigers know that the territory is unavailable. Each one needs 30.9 mi2  (80 km2) of forest to hunt in.

How long does a Sumatran tiger live?

Sumatran tiger lifespan varies on the conditions of their surroundings, in the wildlife, they survive around 15-20 years and in captivity, they can live up to 25 years.

How do they reproduce?

Female tigers mature sexually at about three to four years of age and males mature at four to five years. Males and females leave their solitary life behind when they mate. Mating occurs year-round. The Sumatran tiger reproduction is concluded after a gestation period of 90-110 days when the female gives birth to a litter of one to six cubs. The cubs stay with the mothers until they are two years old.

What is their conservation status?

Many of the Sumatran tigers have fallen prey to poaching. The IUCN Red List lists Sumatran tigers in the Critically Endangered category due to the loss of Sumatran tiger habitats, for example, the deforestation of lands for oil palm plantations has drastically decreased the Sumatran tiger population in Indonesia. Poaching of Sumatran tigers in the wildlife for tiger parts has causes 78% of their deaths.

Many of the wild tigers in Indonesia are living under protected areas like national parks to keep control of the remaining population and to protect them from poachers who hunt them for tiger parts that are sold on the black market. There have been strong conservation efforts to protect these tigers. Captive breeding programs outside of Indonesia have allowed the researcher to better study the Sumatran tigers.

Sumatran tiger conservation is one of the most important missions of the Indonesian government in lieu of their fading number with proper care for them in a national park and other government facilities.

Sumatran Tiger Fun Facts

What do Sumatran tigers look like?

Sumatra tigers are a critically endangered species of tigers. They are the smallest of the tigers, the reason for which is them evolving on an isolated tiger habitat on the Island of Sumatra. They can be differentiated from other tigers by their stripes that are closer than usual, with a darker orange fur coat.

Facts about Sumatran tigers are educational.

How cute are they?

Tiger cubs are as cute as these animals can get! The same can't be said about adults as they are aggressive and may attack humans if they think we are aiming to harm them.

How do they communicate?

Like all tiger species, Sumatran tigers use their tails to communicate with each other. A loosely hanging tail is a sign of relaxation, and aggression is displayed by rapid movements of the tail from side to side. They use roars as a warning to other tigers that they are trespassing on their territory and also as a sign of invitation for potential mates who want to know if a female is ready to mate with them.

How big is a Sumatran tiger?

The Sumatran tiger is one of the smallest subspecies of tigers. The Sumatran tiger size differs from males to females. Males tigers have a head-to-body length of 87-100 in (220-255 cm), females tigers have a head-to-body length of 85-91 in (215-230 cm).

In comparison, the largest subspecies of tigers, the Siberian tiger, averages around 129.9 in (330 cm) in length, with a 39.4 in (100 cm) tail.

How fast can a Sumatran tiger run?

Due to their smaller stature than the other tiger subspecies, Sumatran tigers are more agile and in terms of speed, they can run up to 40 mp/h (65 km/h) in short bursts.

How much does a Sumatran tiger weigh?

Even though they are the smallest species of tigers, they weigh considerably well for their size. Males weigh from 220.5-308.6 lb (100-140 kg) and females weigh from 165.4-242.5 lb (75-110 kg).

What are their male and female names of the species?

A male Sumatran tiger is called a tiger and a female Sumatran tiger is called a tigress.

What would you call a baby Sumatran tiger?

Sumatran tiger babies are called cubs. These Sumatran tiger cubs stay with their mothers until they are two years old and then seek out new territories to conquer.

What do they eat?

Like all tigers, the Sumatran tiger prey on any available animal, big or small. Their diet consists of mostly wild boars, tapirs, monkeys, deers, and in some cases fish. They tend to get at least one large kill a week to keep themselves well-fed.

Are they dangerous?

Big cats and dangerous go hand-in-hand! The Sumatran tiger food chain puts every living being smaller than them as prey. They are apex predators and are ruthless with their prey. Not only are they dangerous, but they are also outright aggressive to anything that even poses a threat to them in their habitat.

Would they make a good pet?

No! These majestic creatures cannot be kept as pets. They are critically endangered and are predators of the highest rank, with a low population and dying habitat, it's best to leave them to their surroundings without trying to domesticate them.

Did you know...

The Sumatran tiger is the smallest tiger species found in the world. This small build helps them navigate dense forests easily and helps them in stalking their prey. They have slightly webbed paws which makes them excellent swimmers. The Sumatran tiger can also be differentiated by its larger mane and narrower stripes compared to other tiger species.

Loss of habitats to human activities and poaching has left these creatures endangered with a vast decrease in the Sumatran tiger populations in the wild. As of 2020, an approximate count of 400 Sumatran tigers is left alive in the wild.

They are also generally shy and will avoid humans unless they pose a threat to them.

The Sumatran tiger scientific name was changed in 2017, where they were renamed from 'Panthera tigris sumatrae' to 'Panthera tigris sondaica' which included the now-extinct Javan and Balinese tiger population.

They are also a genetically unique species because they were separated from the rest of the world because of rising sea levels that left them stranded on the Island of Sumatra.

To curb Sumatran tiger poaching, the government of Indonesia, turned to religion for help to stop it. In 2014, the country's top religious body announced a fatwa (religious decree) that prohibited the poaching of the tigers. So the protection of Sumatran tigers in Indonesia is not just a legislative law but also a religious law.

What makes the Sumatran tiger unique?

The Sumatran tiger is the smallest of the tiger species with unique stripes that are closer together and a dark orange fur compared to the other subspecies.

Why is the Sumatran tiger endangered?

Sumatran tigers are endangered because of habitat loss due to legal and illegal actions taken by humans. Legal actions like cutting down forests to make more room for a booming palm oil plantation industry has had a massive impact on the Sumatran tiger populations as they have had to move out of the old habitat and find newer ones, which leads to a confrontation with humans as they stray into human habitats in search of food. Poaching the tiger for its fur, bones, whiskers and other parts has played a huge role in them becoming endangered as poaching results in 78% death of Sumatran tigers.

Sadly, there are only 400 or so Sumatran tigers that can be found in the wild. Conservation efforts on the island of Sumatra have been at an all-time high, with tigers in the wildlife being given priority and making sure poaching is kept in check.  

Humans are in conclusion, the only threat to these tigers as they lack a natural predator. With continuous illegal activities like poaching and logging, tigers will come in contact with humans and as history has foretold, in a fight between humans and animals, humans always prevail.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other mammals including Siberian tiger, or Sumatran elephant.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our Sumatran tiger coloring pages.

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