Tiger Weight: Species, Life Stages & Gender Differences

Tigers are among the most incredible animals worldwide, arguably the most stunning.

Tigers are endangered species, and it’s more likely that you will see them in sanctuaries instead of in the wild. The orange-like fur and dark vertical stripes with a white underbelly make these animals identifiable.

However, the beauty of these animals should not trick you into thinking that they are friendly. Tigers are the biggest predators on the planet, and they always protect their territories.

Out of the many fascinating things about tigers, many people wonder how much these animals weigh, considering how heavy they look.

The average weight range of all the different tiger species is between 198-683 pounds (90-310 kg) for adult males and 143-397 pounds (65-180 kg) for adult females. At birth the average weight of a cub is 780-1500 grams (27,5-53 ounces). The heaviest tiger even recorded weighed 1025 pounds (465 kg).

Keep reading to learn more about tigers weight, the subspecies, life cycle, and gender differences.

How Much do Tigers Weigh?

There are six known tiger species in the world, well actually eight, but two of them are mixes of the others.

Below, we will categorize them into their respective species to help you understand their weights better. After all, every tiger breed is unique and has a different weight and physical appearance.

Weight of The Siberian Tiger

P.t.altaica Tomak Male

Siberian tigers are the biggest tiger species globally and grow twice the other tigers. A Siberian tiger can weigh around 661 to 771 pounds (300 to 350 kg). Females are smaller than the males and can reach up to 400 pounds (181 kg)

However, over the years, these animals seem to be shading weight. Illegal hunting has drastically reduced the number of prey, and they have to adapt to new diets.

Weight of The Bengal Tiger

Bengal tigers are the second largest tiger breed, with adult males weighing around 386-573 pounds (175-260 kg), while females ranges from 220-350 pounds (100-160 kg).

Weight of The Malayan Tiger

Malayan Tiger walking

Adult male Malayan tigers weigh between 104-285 pounds (47-130 kg), while females weigh between 52-195 pounds (24-88 kg).

The Malayan tiger (Panthera tigris jacksoni) was considered an Indochinese tiger until 2004, when it was declared a separate species. The two species are similar, only that the Malayan tiger is smaller.

Malayan tigers live in tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests in southern Thailand and the Malaysian Peninsular. The subspecies “jacksoni” is an honor to Peter Jackson, the former chairman of the IUCN cat specialist group.

Weight of The Indochinese Tiger

Adult male Indochinese tigers can grow to around 330-430 pounds (149-195 kg). Female species grow to around 220-290 pounds (99.7-131 kg).

This tiger species is critically endangered, and most of the surviving population lives in Thailand.

Weight of The South China Tiger

South China Tiger

Adult male South China tigers weigh around 287-386 pounds (130-175 kg), while females weigh 220-254 pounds (100-115 kg)

The south china tiger (Panthera tigris amoyensis) mainly inhabits central and eastern China. These tiger species are functionally extinct, with the existing 47 living in zoos around china. More than 4,000 south china tigers were found 40 years ago, but they were mostly hunted to be kept as pets.

Weight of The Sumatran Tiger

Males can grow to around 8 feet and weigh around 260 pounds (117 kg), while females can only reach 7 feet and weigh 200 pounds (90 kg).

The Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae) is a unique species because it is only found on Sumatra Island in Indonesia. This is another critically endangered tiger species protected by law in Indonesia.

These tigers have a dark coat with broadened black stripes that are often double and closely spaced. The Sumatran tiger also has striped forelegs, making them unique.

Reproduction and Life Cycle

Tigers do not have a specified breeding period and can mate throughout the year. The preparedness to mate is announced through scent production and vocalization. Mating mostly happens during winter, and most cubs are born from March to June and peak in September. The gestation period lasts between 93 and 114 days. Conception can only happen within six days of frequent and noisy mating.

Females give birth in hidden locations like dense thickets, tall grass, caves, and rocky crevices. Littering can be between two and four cubs, with some bearing up to six cubs. These cubs weigh from 780-1500 grams (27,5-53 ounces) at birth and are born with their eyes closed. They only open their eyes after 6-14 days. After two weeks, their milk teeth erupt from their gums.

tiger cub

Once they reach eight weeks old, they can start eating meat, and their mothers will shift them to a new den. The male tigers are not fully involved in rearing though there are occasions when tigers and tigresses can be seen walking with cubs.

These cubs make short ventures with the mother but do not travel over long distances in their territory. At the time of weaning, they can walk with their mothers in the territory as they learn how to hunt.

At some point, one cub dominates the rest and is primarily a male. The dominant cub stays more active than the rest and leads their play. After some time, the dominant one leaves the mother to be fully independent.

At 11 months, the cubs become fully independent and achieve sexual maturity from 18-20 months. The rest of the pack leaves their mother at around three years old and continues to grow until they are five.

When they are wandering, they meet other unrelated male cubs, killing others to make the female tiger receptive. Tigers live to around eight years old, and the oldest one was 26 years old though in captivity.

There was a time when a male Bengal tiger defended and raised two female cubs whose mother died of illness. The male took care of the two, fed them, and protected them from his sister, who was a rival. This relationship saw the animals train the animals to hunt and survive in the wild.

Gender Differences Between Tigers

Gender Differences Between Tigers

Many biologists are interested in the fascinating behaviors displayed by male and female tigers. Scientists mostly study tigers in captivity and can determine their gender by looking at their reproductive organs.

Studying tigers in the wild is different, and scientists tend to keep a safe distance making it challenging to tell the difference. However, numerous methods can be used to determine the gender of a tiger.

Size Differences

Tigers are the largest cats on the planet, with male Siberian and Bengal tigers topping the list. These tigers weigh over 600 pounds (272 kg), while females averaging 350 pounds (158 kg).

It is very hard to compare tiger sizes in the wild because they are usually in solitude. Researchers, therefore, measure objects around the tiger’s surroundings to observe how smaller or bigger they are than these objects. You have to understand that males are bigger than females to tell the difference.

Body Composition Differences

Although they are hard to spot, there are several visible distinctions in body composition between male and female tigers. Male tigers have longer tails to complement their elongated bodies than females. Males also have bigger front paws, and checking paw prints can help determine gender.

During mating season, female tigers get pregnant, and scientists can watch out for bulging bellies to tell the gender. Protruding teats can also show the difference between a male and a female tiger.

Behavior Differences

Even though tigers may display similar behavior, there are behaviors unique to males and females. Males hoover in more extensive territories than females.

Scientists can measure the roaming range to determine whether it is male or female considering male tigers are very territorial. Even though both genders fight intruders, males do it more frequently than females.

Almost all tiger species mark territories by lifting their tails and releasing a mixture of gland secretions and urine. Males spray their territories once a day, while females can go for days without doing it.

Male tigers are also rarely seen with cubs. So when scientists observe a tiger walking around with many cubs, it is a female.

What’s The Heaviest Tiger Ever Recorded?

So far, the heaviest tiger to be recorded is a Siberian tiger called Jaipur, which weighed an incredible 1025 pounds (465 kg). The second heaviest was a Bengal tiger roaming the wild and weighing over 857 pounds (389 kg).

Originally posted on April 13, 2022 @ 10:54 am

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