There is a world somewhere between reality and fiction. Although ignored by many, it is very real and so are those living in it. This forum is about the natural world. Here, wild animals will be heard and respected. The forum offers a glimpse into an unknown world as well as a room with a view on the present and the future. Anyone able to speak on behalf of those living in the emerald forest and the deep blue sea is invited to join.
--- Peter Broekhuijsen ---

  • 7 Vote(s) - 4.71 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
ON THE EDGE OF EXTINCTION - A - THE TIGER (Panthera tigris)

Canada GrizzlyClaws Offline
Canine Expert
*****
Moderators
( This post was last modified: 07-28-2015, 07:08 AM by GrizzlyClaws )

They were probably a group of Amur tiger who got stranded in the northern part of Japan after the last glacial period.

Also, they probably proceeded the same undergoing dwarfism just like the Sunda tiger.
1 user Likes GrizzlyClaws's post
Reply

Canada GrizzlyClaws Offline
Canine Expert
*****
Moderators

Here is the tiger fossil from Taiwan, not sure if it is Panthera tigris acutidens or Panthera tigris amoyensis.


*This image is copyright of its original author
4 users Like GrizzlyClaws's post
Reply

Netherlands peter Offline
Expert & Researcher
*****
Moderators
( This post was last modified: 07-29-2015, 05:23 AM by peter )

'SHIKAR MEMORIES - A RECORD OF SPORT AND OBSERVATIONS IN INDIA AND BURMA' (Lt.-Col. H.S. Wood, London, 1934, 312 pages)

1 - INTRODUCTION

Wood was a medical doctor who spent nearly 36 years of his life in British India. I'm not quite sure as to the exact period, but based on what I read I'd say it was between 1890-1926, give or take one or two years.

The book doesn't top my list, but it is informing. Most of the content, as you guessed, is about hunting. Nearly all animals hunted in those days feature in a separate chapter and there also is a bit of advice in the preface:

" ... The true hunter must be a naturalist and botanist, as such knowledge then gives additional zest to the sport. The shikari must also cultivate his powers of observation. The old hunter sees and notices everything. The training for shikar is that of an athlete. One must be very fit to undertake serious big game hunting. My advice to attain this is to avoid alcohol and over-eating; to lead a regular life, and acquire mental occupation and a good conscience. Avoid late nights, big dinners, meets, and stuffy club-rooms. I am an advocate for tobacco in moderation; it is good as long as the smoke is not inhaled. A pipe or cigarette at the end of a hard day by the camp fire is very soothing. Some of the fittest men I know have been serious shikaris all their lives, and when they retire they look twenty years younger than their real age, and with the energy and vitality to enjoy life for the remainder of the allotted span ... " (pp. 8).

So there you have it. A medical doctor. Don't say he didn't tell you.

Although he adviced to change the rifle for a camera, Wood himself wasn't shy in the trophy department. His trophies were presented to the Bristol Museum:



*This image is copyright of its original author

     

2 - ASSAM AND SUNDERBANS TIGERS 

During the 36 years he was in British India, Wood shot 17 tigers. All tigers were shot in Assam. Two tigers were shot on foot, two were shot from the back of an elephant and twelve were shot from a machan. In his opinion, Assam tigers were large and, in contrast to those in other parts of India, often had long, white, hair. In his day, they were numerous in many parts of Assam.

Wood was familiar with the Sunderbans as well. He wrote tigers were numerous before many emigrants settled in that region. Many British who made their home in Assam had to travel through the Sunderbans in those days and not a few saw tigers:

" ... Many people, including myself, going to Assam by the Sunderbunds steamer-service have seen tiger on the banks of 'khals', and a Mrs. M. told me that, once when coming up a creek, three tigers swam a 'khal' just in front of the prow of the vessel, and no one on board had a rifle. Sitting on the deck one day with my wife, and just as the sun was setting, we saw a tiger emerge from the jungle downstream. It came for a drink. I rushed into my cabin, got my rifle and had a shot. I forgot to allow for the movement of the vessel, my shot threw up the sand a few feet beyond him, and he disappeared like a flash.

Many of these Sunderbund tigers were man-eaters, and did not hesitate to carry off men from the boats moored near the bank. Many a woodcutter and fisherman has never returned to his homestead. I do not know whether any European met with his death in this way, but as 'shikaris' from Calcutta were always going to Saugor and elsewhere to bag tiger it is likely. B., a well-known shikari in Assam, told me he had bagged thirty-five tigers in the Sunderbunds. The places where people had been killed were marked with red flags, and were put up to warn others ... " (pp. 42).

Today, Bhutan tigers are seen as remarkable, but in Wood's day tigers were seen in elevated regions as well:

" ... I have come across tigers in all sorts of country, in grass jungle, in grass jungle interspersed with patches of forest, in ravines and in mountainous places, where I have seen their tracks at an altitude of 6000 feet. Some years ago a tiger suddenly made its appearance at a rest house on the Pahgu Road near Darjeeling. This was at Tonglu, with an elevation of 10.374 feet ... " (pp. 43).
 
Wood wrote tigers were often found in caves, but not in Assam. The only exception was at the 'Kopili', but these caves were inhabited by bears.
  
In general, tigers were shy and tried to avoid man, but Wood knew of many instances where they were very bold:

" ... In Tezpur one walked along the Ex. Engineer's bungalow veranda at night; this had been freshly cemented, and the pugmarks were unmistakable. I once shot one at Tezpur not fifty yards from my gate, as will be spoken of later. At Haflong a tiger took away a pony feeding on the golf course, and one I never succeeded in bagging would enter the buffalo-sheds at night and kill, and moreover mauled a herdsman very badly when he went to investigate ... " (pp. 45).


3 - WHEN TIGERS AND HUMANS CLASH

A few weeks ago, in the thread about the Ranthambore male tiger who was arrested, tried and sentenced after killing a fourth human, one of those debating wrote a typical man-eater often directly goes for the neck, whereas other tigers attacking a human would lash out and retreat. Could be, but there are many exceptions to the rule. In the end, every tiger is an individual.  

Wood examined both natural kills and humans killed by tigers. Natural kills first:

" ... The tiger springs at his victim's side or flanks, holding on with his powerful claws. His main object is to paralyse the beast by biting deeply into the spine in the cervical, dorsal or lumbar regions. Deep wounds made by the canines are always apparent. The weight of the tiger, something like 450 to 500 pounds, helps also to pull the animal down ...  If the quarry is a large one, a horse, for instance, the tiger pursuing tries his utmost to hamstring the animal ... " (pp. 46).

" ... As to human victims, I have made post-mortems on several cases, and in almost every one the man has been seized by the chest, which showed two deep wounds in front and two behind, caused by the canine teeth. In one case, the scalp of a beater had been torn down over his ear, and in another, of a herdsman, the face and arms had been terribly mauled. In the latter case a tigress with two cubs attacked without provocation. The man was bringing in milk to Haflong, armed only with an umbrella. He was walking along a jungle-path and met this tigress with her offspring. All three dashed away into the jungle, but I suppose the cubs became separated from the mother. The man walked on and was suddenly attacked. He eventually beat off the tigress with his umbrella and came into Haflong for treatment ... " (pp. 47).

It seems there are differences between those who attack humans to defend themselves, those who strike out in anger when they feel trapped and those who habitually kill humans for food. Maybe experienced man-eaters directly go for the neck, but others learned to quickly overcome resistance by biting the torso. Man-eaters usually eat nearly everything:

" ... The man-eater leaves only the feet, hands and skull of his human victim. In the North Cachar Hills the relatives and friends organise in order to do all they can to recover these remains that they may be buried near the victim's village; for they say that if these are not recovered the man's ghost will always haunt the village ... " (pp. 47).
 
An experienced man-eater often is very determinded to secure a victim:

" ... At Kaitamabi, not far from Manipur (in the extreme east of India, where Wood was stationed for 7,5 years), a man-eater bit or tore away the sides of the grass-hut in which the coolies working on the telegraph line were lodged and bagged his victim ... " (pp. 45).  

In one chapter, the man-eaters of Langting feature:

" ... The scene of these tragedies is laid at the small railway station, Langting, on the Assam-Bengal Railway. The station lies on the railway between Silchar and Gauhati, not very far from the hill station of Haflong, where I lived after retirement. This little railway station, and the villages around, were in a state of panic for weeks, and traffic was very nearly held up. The station master had baricaded the station building with rice bags and, for a time, not a single person could venture outside his dwelling for fear of being snapped up by man-eaters ... " (pp. 91). 
 
This was a typical case of man-made man-eaters:



*This image is copyright of its original author



Two of the 'panthers' were shot very close to the railway station. Wood shot one of them. The first leopard was a young male in excellent condition, but the one shot by Wood was a very old and emaciated male with an empty stomach. He had attacked a woman collecting sticks a few days earlier. When she screamed for help, the Jemadar mahout and others came to her rescue. They told her to stay put, but she didn't listen and was killed but a short while afterwards. 

The other two, a leopard and a tigress, were enticed into traps. One of these was baited with a pig, whereas the other was baited with a goat. The tigress met with her end when she entered the cage with the pig. Wood saw the skin and skull of the tigress some time later. It was a very large animal with unworn teeth.

Wood got to two conclusions: 

a - A tigress will revenge herself after being deprived of her young or her mate
b - Once acquired by panther or tiger, the taste of human flesh is incurable.   

One could add one more: many man-eaters often are man-made.

When at Sylhet, " ... a boy came running into the station, saying that, as he and another boy were throwing rocks into a nullah to oust a civet cat, a large red beast had dashed out and killed his companion. The boy was brought in afterwards, and I at once saw from the teeth wounds in the chest that a tiger had killed the boy ... " (pp. 80-81). Wood, the D.C. and a sporting zamindar decided to go for him, but one of the beaters was bitten through the chest and the police surrounding the nullah omitted to kill the tiger when he left. A few months after this " ... the same tiger killed a man at Fenchugarj, fifteen miles from Sylhet. He was then tracked into a disused Mohammedan graveyard, but killed three more men in the attempt to bag him, and was shot by B. of the police before he could do more harm ... " (pp. 82). This tiger wasn't a man-eater, but a short-tempered animal who killed at least six humans in a few months.  


4 - SMELL, PELAGE, HABITS AND SIZE OF ASSAM TIGERS

a - Sense of smell

One often reads that the sense of smell is poorly developed in tigers. If what I saw in captive animals is true, however, I would get to a different opinion. They do not compare to canids and bears, but I agree with Wood:

" ... The sense of smell is very acute. The ethmoidal sinuses in the tiger's nose are very large ... " (pp. 49).  


b - An albino tiger

Wood is the only one who mentioned a true albino shot in Assam:

" ... No two tiger skins are alike, and the markings about the forehead and the tail vary very much. The colour of those specimens shot in the hot plains is much lighter than that of animals shot in hilly country or in thick forest. With age, and with preserved skins, the colour becomes paler. Many of these pale tigers have been described as White Tigers or Albinos. This is a mistake, because a tiger to be a true Albino must have no vestige of a stripe, and the iris must be blue. In a taxidermist's shop-window in Calcutta I saw a so-called white tiger exhibited. Certainly the stripes were fewer than those of the average tiger, but it was not an Albino. The only Albino tiger ever shot was obtained in Assam, where many people saw it .. " (pp. 49).


c - Skin

" ... The skin of a tiger or tigress in its prime has a sheen like that of a race horse, and one hardly finds a tick on it. In an older animal the hair is short, rough, and mangy, and one shot by the magistrate of Haflong had hundreds on him ... " (pp. 50-51). 


d - Size 

Wood shot 17 tigers, all in Assam. Of these, two were young males who taped 8.11 and 8.6. Of the other 15, at least two were females. The longest was 8.6, but he was sure the Langting man-eating tigress was a larger animal. 

That leaves 13 other tigers. My guess is the majority of them were males, but Wood didn't offer details. What is known is that at least four of them were large animals. The longest taped ten feet four and a half inches (316,23 cm.), the second longest was ten feet two inches (309,88 cm.) and the third one, shot near the Dehingi River, was nine feet ten and a half inches (300,99 cm.). The fourth male "... measured nearly ten feet (304,80 cm.), was very fat but mangy, and was swarming with ticks ... " (pp. 78). In total length, they more or less compared with the longest shot by the Maharajah of Cooch Behar and his guests.

Although he didn't state in what way they were measured, I'm sure they were measured 'over curves'. In those days, this was the most used method in Assam. An indirect confirmation was in the length of the largest male leopards he shot in that both taped well over 8 feet in total length (eight feet seven and a half and eight feet four and a half inches). When measured 'between pegs', the longest male leopards in India range between 7.8-7.11 (233,68 - 241,30 cm.).

The first tiger had a ruff and a beautiful pelt typical for a prime animal. When skinning the giant, Wood found a deep wound in the right frontfoot as well as many other wounds caused by claws. This tiger had been involved in a fight over a female a few days earlier. The other ten-footer, very heavy, also had a splendid coat and a great ruff. The tiger taping just under ten feet was shot near the Dehingi River.

By piecing things together and doing it again, I concluded the three big males, most probably, were shot just after the First World War (1918-1922 or thereabout).

Here's two photographs of two different tigers. The one at the top, shot near Haflong, wasn't one of the three big animals described above, but he was big.

The second tiger, below, was a young male (8.11 'over curves') Wood shot when he was stationed at Tezpur. This male had entered the cow-house of the Deputy Commissioner and mauled a large cow. Wood shot him the next day from a machan when the tiger returned and attacked the cow: 



*This image is copyright of its original author



Camp near the Dehingi River:



*This image is copyright of its original author



5 - TIGERS AND OTHER ANIMALS

a - Elephants

" ... It is useful to know that when beating for a tiger with a line of elephants the tiger will very often break back. When wounded he will charge the line, and if not knocked over will usually spring at the elephant's head. In this position the elephant cannot use his tusks, so puts his head down and tries to crush the tiger between it and the ground. He will then put his forefeet on his attacker and then, ..., will toss the body backwards and forwards till every bone is broken. I have seen this done in the case of a charging bear ... " (pp. 51).

" ... Elephants get fearfully mauled sometimes; my father had an elephant that had had a piece of the trunk bitten out high up, which exposed the trunk cavity. The poor brute could therefore only drink water by submerging the trunk above the hole, but in pouring this down his throat he lost a considerable amount ... " (pp. 52).


b - Wild boars and bears

" ... A tiger will hesitate to attack a solitary wild boar, but sometimes he does and a dour struggle ensues. I had a sporting servant who witnessed such a fight, and he told me that the tiger slunk away leaving the boar master of the situation. Whilst at Haflong I visited the scene of such a combat. The long grass for yards round was flattened down, and the earth torn up and covered with blood. From the tracks one could see that the tiger had bled profusely, and I concluded that the boar had had the best of it. Once, while shooting at Kopili (North Cachar Hills), I came on the droppings of a tiger, and in it were the hairs of a bear ... " (58).

In other books I read, also loaded with firsthand accounts, it was confirmed that some male Assam tigers follow elephant herds in order to prey on the calves. Many were killed. Most writers confirmed fights between wild boars and tigers were not uncommon. Tigers won most, but a mistake often proved to be costly.

It's interesting that Amur tigers, also heavily involved in wild boars, seem to do better in this respect. In a report on causes of death I posted some time ago, only one was said to be killed by a wild boar. Another case is mentioned in Heptner and Sludskij (German translation, 1980, pp. 156). There are no doubt more tigers who succumb in fights with wild boars, but these incidents apparently are few and far between.
8 users Like peter's post
Reply

United States Pckts Offline
Bigcat Enthusiast
******

@peter
I'm having a discussion with Warsaw and he is saying the translation of this text
http://coollib.net/b/261421/read
Warsaw states:
"Jankowski only wrote that the tiger had eaten the bear . It's weird to me that the original text of Jankowski book does not mention a single word about any signs of struggle between the bear and the tiger .
BTW From the same book:Tiger,deer,ginseng" by V.J .Jankovski"

and you said
"This one was similar in length (11.6 'over curves'), but bigger all the way. W.J. Jankowski, who was there when the tiger was shot, wrote it was the largest Amur tiger he and his brothers had even seen. And they had seen more than anyone. In his letter to V. Mazak (May 8, 1970), he wrote the giant tiger was at least 300 kg. A few days before he was shot (in July 1943), the tiger had killed a large male brown bear of which only the head and one leg remained. The bear undoubtedly contributed to the great weight. I've posted the photograph more than once, but I can't get enough of it. It really is a glimpse into the past and one of a kind:"

So I was just curious if the text states that it was a Male bear or not?
Thanks Peter
1 user Likes Pckts's post
Reply

Canada GrizzlyClaws Offline
Canine Expert
*****
Moderators
( This post was last modified: 07-31-2015, 10:40 AM by GrizzlyClaws )

Some tiger mandible, can you identify its subspecies? @peter


*This image is copyright of its original author



*This image is copyright of its original author



*This image is copyright of its original author
4 users Like GrizzlyClaws's post
Reply

Netherlands peter Offline
Expert & Researcher
*****
Moderators
( This post was last modified: 08-04-2015, 12:50 AM by peter )

(07-31-2015, 01:24 AM)'Pckts' Wrote: @peter
I'm having a discussion with Warsaw and he is saying the translation of this text
http://coollib.net/b/261421/readWarsaw states:
"Jankowski only wrote that the tiger had eaten the bear . It's weird to me that the original text of Jankowski book does not mention a single word about any signs of struggle between the bear and the tiger .
BTW From the same book:Tiger,deer,ginseng" by V.J .Jankovski"

and you said
"This one was similar in length (11.6 'over curves'), but bigger all the way. W.J. Jankowski, who was there when the tiger was shot, wrote it was the largest Amur tiger he and his brothers had even seen. And they had seen more than anyone. In his letter to V. Mazak (May 8, 1970), he wrote the giant tiger was at least 300 kg. A few days before he was shot (in July 1943), the tiger had killed a large male brown bear of which only the head and one leg remained. The bear undoubtedly contributed to the great weight. I've posted the photograph more than once, but I can't get enough of it. It really is a glimpse into the past and one of a kind:"

So I was just curious if the text states that it was a Male bear or not?
Thanks Peter
 


1 -  A SCAN OF THE PAGE IN V. MAZAK'S BOOK

V. Mazak´s book ´Der Tiger´ was first published in German. There are three editions. The page below is from the third edition of his book (1983). In order to prevent confusion, I decided to post the relevant page without comment. The page is in German, so you have to use the translator. 



*This image is copyright of its original author



2 - TRANSLATION

After reading the comments below, I decided to translate the (last) part in red for those unable to use the translator in a correct way. Here's the translation:
  
" ... In order to be as complete as possible, I perhaps have to say that Jankowski (in his letter of May 8, 1970) added that the tiger, a few days before he was shot, had killed and eaten a very large male brown bear of which only a leg and the head, found by Jankowski, remained ... ". 

That's it.

It is about 'killed'. It is clear that Mazak quoted from Jankowski's letter of May 8, 1970. 


3 - W.J. JANKOWSKI

W.J. Jankowski was born in the forest and raised by a man who was an experienced hunter himself; his father G. Jankowski prominently featured in 'The Tiger's Claw'. W.J. Jankowski and his brothers were born hunters and knew how to read tracks and find the animals they were after. If W.J. Jankowski wrote the tiger had killed a very large male brown bear, he had very good reasons to conclude the bear had been killed by the tiger and not, for instance, by another male brown bear. Tigers and bears kill in a different way.    

Also take notice of the fact that Jankowski provided the additional information on the bear himself. Mazak didn't ask for it, because he couldn't have known about the incident. 


4 - ABOUT AMUR TIGERS, AMUR BEARS, RESEARCH AND FACTS

I know those interested in bears and Amur tigers will have more than a few doubts about Jankowski's information. One reason is an average adult male Amur brown bear is heavier than an average adult male Amur tiger. Another reason is biologists didn't find adult male brown bears killed by Amur tigers between 1992 and today. They confirmed Amur tigers prey on bears, but agreed only specialists (older males) do so consistently. Even they don't hunt large bears, they say. Specialists hunt immatures and, every now and then, adult females. Females who put up a good defence and wounded their opponents in 20-minute fights. 

These are facts, established between 1992-2015. But it also is a fact that reliable observations on male Amur bears and male Amur tigers collected before 1992 by experienced biologists and hunters were dismissed. One reason is they didn't publish documents and books. If they, like Bromlej, did, the information was wanting in some respects.      

In the last two years, a number of facts on tigers and bears collected between 1992-2015 were (partly) revised. The reason is two documents that were discussed in this thread. Experienced biologists found that quite many Amur tigers, females and immatures like two-year old tiger 'Boris' (who has a collar and killed a three-year old bear) included, hunt bears. They also concluded that in some parts of the Russian Far East, especially in summer, bears are an important source of food, not to say they nearly top the list. 

It is possible that Amur tigers prefer hunting cubs and immatures, but a bit of research would quickly reveal that it would be impossible to get to the percentages found in this way. The reason is bears, foodwise, contribute more than the number of kills suggest. This can only mean that Amur tigers kill quite large bears. This conclusion contradicts the statements on tigers and bears published a few years ago.  

It is more than likely that a beginner, bearwise, would start at the bottom, but experienced tigers probably hunt quite large bears every now and then. As large as possible, as this would help in the energybalance department. Important, especially in Russia. Ask the wolves. Research says Amur tigers do very well in this department, whereas wolves do not.


5 - AMUR BEARS AND AMUR TIGERS - ENCOUNTERS, FACTS AND RUMOURS

When you hunt a dangerous animal, things can go wrong. An experienced tiger probably would abandon a fight not going his way. He can hunt again. A bear, however, can't. Not saying that adult male brown bears would be a regular item on the list of daily groceries, but it is more than likely that an experienced male tiger will give it a try when the opportunity presents itself. It is known that experienced tigers in particular will go for large animals. It is also known that male tigers in particular sometimes end up in fights with dangerous animals. Sometimes isn't often, but it happens. More often than one would expect. So often, in fact, that those who really knew about tigers, like very experienced Forest Officers, wrote about this particular habit.

There are many rumours about the alleged size of male brown bears. Kucherenko wrote that ten adult males averaged a little over 264 kg. and there are many records of heavier animals, both in Russia and in northeastern China. But three adult males recently weighed in autumn, when brown bears reach their maximum weight, were not, or only marginally, heavier than an average adult male Amur tiger. And what about hibernation, when a bear loses up to 30% of his weight? What will happen in a year with crop failure, when desperate bears, unable to hibernate, hunt even other bears for food? In one region, about 70% of the population was exterminated in one year only. And what about the information of people who really know about tigers and bears in Russia? People interviewed by Vaillant? They said tigers will make way for a large bear, but male tigers will confront a male bear of similar size who exceeded his limit. The reason? A question of 'principle' (not explained). Some bears were destroyed. Limb by limb, Vaillant wrote. Rumours, some wrote. But Vaillant is not an amateur (he wrote many books and his research is impeccable) and at least one experienced biologist I contacted thought the book was both accurate and interesting. 

All of this could be true to an extent, biologists will say. But a prime male brown bear in good shape will wear a tiger down. Wear a tiger down? Rumour has it that Russian biologists, some decades ago, concluded male brown bears would 'win on points'. But their conclusion wasn't published and the result was discussions continued. As for 'wearing a tiger down'. There's no question that some male bears would be out of the equasion on account of their great size, but I think it's unlikely that an animal known for prolonged fights with animals way heavier than male bears, like wild buffalo's, gaurs, rhino's and elephants, would be 'worn down' by a heavier and less agile animal like a bear. An animal at times described as 'a clumsy giant' by Russian biologists and naturalists (Krechmar one of these). 

Let's move to captive animals to find out a bit more. The trainers I talked to agreed male brown bears like brawls, but they are also known to overplay their hand at times. When you overplay your hand in a fight with a tiger, one would think the most likely result would be a dead bear. This conclusion was not denied by the trainers I interviewed (many are reluctant to talk about fights with a fatal outcome for reasons all too well known). Is there more? Yes. Some years ago, I saw a very large male brown bear in a rescue centre somewhere in Europe. He was so powerful that he, during treatment (when supposedly sedated), destroyed everything that held him on the table when I entered the room to measure him. I was nearly flattened by those running for their lives when I entered the room. This mighty animal was so stressed by the Amurs who had recently arrived, that he had to be moved to another place.

Tigers no doubt quickly tire as a result of the way they fight, but they apparently are able to continue fighting for many hours. There's no question that tigers perish in prolonged fights with dangerous animals, but I also don't doubt they win more often than not. There's plenty of proof in books of those who, a century ago, saw what we did not. I know old books often are dismissed by biologists (and posters), but that doesn't mean that the incidents described in these books didn't happen. 


6 - ON OLD BOOKS, MODERN DOCUMENTS AND DISMISSALS

It seems to be modern to dismiss anything you didn't see yourself. I think it's quite something to dismiss those who, a long time ago, witnessed things we did not. Forest Officers were well-trained and had a lot of experience. Some tiger hunters compared. They too often had high standards and accomplished things we can hardly imagine, like living and working in dense forests on your own for nine months of the year without losing your mind. Year after year. This in a period that there were much more tigers than today and forests were so vast that you could walk for weeks without seeing anyone. Some Forest Officers and hunters wrote books. Compared to modern books and documents, they, to put it mildly, do not lack. In fact, I often prefer them for the simple reason they have more information.

It seems quite many regard the information in these old books are unreliable. My conclusion is they are anything but that. Many are loaded with firsthand observations. Quite many of these were not confirmed by others, but that doesn't mean they are unreliable. As to 'observations' and 'facts' presented in modern books and documents. Many 'facts' in modern books on animals, those of biologists included, fall into the category 'copy and paste'. They are anything but accurate and reliable. Compared to books written by those with firsthand experience, one could conclude that one accurate observation beats a fallacy corroborated by many with an excellent background but little experience, flawless English and correct methods or not. Individual observations are different from general rules. Forest Officers and hunters knew and said so, but modern biologists seem reluctant to admit observations can be misleading. Linda Kerley and her collegues (in 'Food Habits of Amur Tigers') admitted things could be a bit different than they initially assumed. A courageous conclusion.

Remember these remarks were not written by someone not interested in modern documents. I am. I think many are very informing and interesting. I also think biologist involved in big cat research and conservation do a great job in all respects. I just don't like dismissals. I also don't like unfounded opinions about then and now. The world we know today is a result of the efforts of those who lived before us and there's no doubt they did an excellent job. If they had failed, a tiger would have been an unclear picture in a book. There's no doubt that many cared about the natural world and acted accordingly. There would have been plenty of Walter Palmer's in those days as well (maybe even more so), but they, in most cases, would have been apprehended and endited by the proper authorities. And not by social media. 

I'm not saying it was better in those days, for it definitely wasn't. There's no joy in World Wars, genocide, abuse of power, segregation, poverty, starvation, disease, slow boats to India and dying of a toochache before you reach 50. Same for killing your fellow man because of distortions regarding race, religion and thought. Today, at least over here, life no doubt is better than before, but I very much doubt if today's moral standards, at the level of individuals, beat those used (half) a century ago. We all give it our best, then and now.                             


7 - CONCLUSION

To return to tigers and bears in Russia. It's not likely that a prime male bear will be hunted, but others, in some parts of the year at least, seem to be in reach of even an average-sized male tiger. Does that mean that some male brown bears are hunted? Nobody knows, but it is clear that the difference in size is limited. A fight would be risky for both, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen. Solitary male wild boars, able to reach 180 kg. and well over in Russia, are courageous and dangerous animals by any account. In spite of that, they are hunted every now and then.              

Primorye is a very large place and the number of people tracking and monitoring tigers (and bears) is limited. Collars could provide more information, but only few tigers have one. My guess is we just don't know that much about tigers and bears and this is what  biologists say when you ask them. Have another look at the mails they sent to those with questions. It will take a long time to get to sound conclusions. Until that day arrives, tigers and bears will feature in forums like this one.
6 users Like peter's post
Reply

Austria Brehm Offline
Member
**

I think using a online translator will cause more confusion...because the results are most of the time awful, if whole sentences are thrown into them.

It doesnt matters much, but the male bear is described not just as large, but as VERY large specimen. This sounds highly impressive, since the tiger was a specimen of minimum 300kg. I think chances are high, that the mentioned brown bear was a specimen of the upper weight range for Ussuri bear's. Im curious, in which context the bear was described as huge and if the bear was bigger than the tiger. Did Jankowski described the bear as very large from a neutral point, or in comparison to the tiger? Are there further information to the bear?
Anyway highly impressive act by the tiger! And it clearly states that the tiger killed and eat the bear a few days before shot.

Also the method how they estimated the tiger's weight. Nine men were required to transport the huge tiger out of the wood...they had to cut his body into pieces. Each of them carried one piece of about 30-40kg. 
4 users Like Brehm's post
Reply

United States tigerluver Offline
Prehistoric Feline Expert
*****
Moderators

9 30-40 kg pieces after the blood loss due to cutting up the animal indeed shows a record specimen. Does the 30-40 kg number seem like an estimate or were the pieces weighed?
1 user Likes tigerluver's post
Reply

Austria Brehm Offline
Member
**
( This post was last modified: 08-01-2015, 07:30 AM by Brehm )

"Der Tiger....war so groß, dass einer von uns Hilfe holen musste, damit wir das Tier aus dem Wald schaffen konnten. Als die Helfer kamen, waren wir insgesamt neun starke Männer. Wir schnitten den Körper des toten Tigers in Stücke und jeder von uns trug eine Ladung von etwa 30-40 kg, so das ich nicht zögere zu sagen. dass das Gewicht des Tigers sicher nicht weniger als 300 kg betrug"

I marked the parts, which sound relevant to me. They had to call for help to carry the tiger out of the wood, because he was so huge. They were nine strong men, after the help arrived. After they cut the body into nine parts, each of them carried one part of about 30-40 kg. Further, he states that he doesn't hesitates to state, that the tiger was for sure not less than 300 kg.

There is no closer description in the scan, if the pieces were weighed (afterwards) or estimated, but in this context, it sounds more like an estimation, because he says "about 30-40 kg". But i think it's possible, that they weighed the pieces afterwards. Maybe peter has more information about that.
5 users Like Brehm's post
Reply

Netherlands peter Offline
Expert & Researcher
*****
Moderators
( This post was last modified: 08-04-2015, 12:53 AM by peter )

As a result of the comments above, I decided to add a translation to post 786. Furthermore, the post was edited today (August 3, 2015).  
3 users Like peter's post
Reply

Australia Richardrli Offline
Wildanimal Enthusiast
**
( This post was last modified: 08-08-2015, 08:00 PM by Richardrli )

@Pckts
I'm reading your debate with Warsaw on Carnivoraforum and he seems to have found first hand documentation that the 1943 Jankowski tiger with the quoted length of 11 feet 6 inches was in fact the skin length. I have no idea what's going on there as this is complete news to me and if that being the case then why did Mazak not specifically mention it? Presumably one of the Jankowski sons who informed Mazak about this tiger did not suffer from selective memory loss so it just seems bizarre that he didn't bring that up yet mentioned about the brown bear that the tiger supposedly ate. @peter, do you think Warsaw has found Russian language info that we (including yourself) simply have no access to?
2 users Like Richardrli's post
Reply

Canada GrizzlyClaws Offline
Canine Expert
*****
Moderators

Amur tiger fang (over 6 inches) and Amur brown bear fang (over 3 inches).


*This image is copyright of its original author
2 users Like GrizzlyClaws's post
Reply

Guatemala GuateGojira Offline
Expert & Researcher
*****

(08-08-2015, 07:57 PM)Richardrli Wrote: @Pckts
I'm reading your debate with Warsaw on Carnivoraforum and he seems to have found first hand documentation that the 1943 Jankowski tiger with the quoted length of 11 feet 6 inches was in fact the skin length. I have no idea what's going on there as this is complete news to me and if that being the case then why did Mazak not specifically mention it? Presumably one of the Jankowski sons who informed Mazak about this tiger did not suffer from selective memory loss so it just seems bizarre that he didn't bring that up yet mentioned about the brown bear that the tiger supposedly ate. @peter, do you think Warsaw has found Russian language info that we (including yourself) simply have no access to?

Can you post the link to that debate? I am interesting to see the data of Warsaw.
1 user Likes GuateGojira's post
Reply

Guatemala GuateGojira Offline
Expert & Researcher
*****

(08-09-2015, 01:27 AM)GrizzlyClaws Wrote: Amur tiger fang (over 6 inches) and Amur brown bear fang (over 3 inches).


*This image is copyright of its original author

Wow, that is a significant difference. However, we most know the sex and age of the specimens, before to get a conclusion. I just my idea right now.
1 user Likes GuateGojira's post
Reply

Canada GrizzlyClaws Offline
Canine Expert
*****
Moderators
( This post was last modified: 08-09-2015, 11:58 AM by GrizzlyClaws )

The Amur tiger is no doubt an alpha male, and the bear is also likely an adult male, since its canine tooth looks quite robust built and mature.

It also looks stouter than that of the male American black bears whose canine teeth are over 2.5 inches long, and the male brown bears' canine teeth are usually over 3 inches.

http://www.glenwoodarchaeology.com/portfolio-3
1 user Likes GrizzlyClaws's post
Reply






Users browsing this thread:
1 Guest(s)

About Us
Go Social  

Welcome to WILDFACT forum, a website that focuses on sharing the joy that wildlife has on offer. We welcome all wildlife lovers to join us in sharing that joy. As a member you can share your research, knowledge and experience on animals with the community.
wildfact.com is intended to serve as an online resource for wildlife lovers of all skill levels from beginners to professionals and from all fields that belong to wildlife anyhow. Our focus area is wild animals from all over world. Content generated here will help showcase the work of wildlife experts and lovers to the world. We believe by the help of your informative article and content we will succeed to educate the world, how these beautiful animals are important to survival of all man kind.
Many thanks for visiting wildfact.com. We hope you will keep visiting wildfact regularly and will refer other members who have passion for wildlife.

Forum software by © MyBB