golden tiger is an incredibly beautiful and rare color variation of
Panthera tigris, and is not designated as a separate subspecies. It
is commonly referred to as the golden tiger, golden tabby and even
the strawberry tiger. As can be clearly seen by viewing the Sanctuaries
Golden Tiger Cams, this cat is easy to distinguish from its orange
or white cousins. The striping is considerably paler and often fades
out into random patches or blotches. For some reason, goldens' tend
to get a little larger and are claimed to have softer fur then standard
tigers. I personally cannot tell the difference!
As with the
white tiger, the goldens' are believed to have Bengal lineage. However,
the majority of captive animals are genetically polluted with the
genes of other tiger subspecies, primarily the Siberian.
that wild population of golden tigers have been observed as far
back as the early 1900's in India. Some scientists speculate that
this color variation has gradually developed to help camouflage
these cats which happen to inhabit large tracts clay covered terrain.
This theory has never been proven and thus remains purely speculation.
It is estimated
that the worldwide population of these rare tigers is fewer than
sixty (60) individuals. We are very fortunate to have the privilege
of working with two of them on a daily basis here at the Tiger Homes
Sanctuary. Marcan and Sherikon are perhaps the most regal of all
the felines housed here. I want to pinch myself every time I glance
at them! There beauty is unmatched.