Molecular Biology and Genetics
Statistics of barcoding coverage
Specimens with Sequences:894
Specimens with Barcodes:93
Species With Barcodes:11
The liger is a hybrid cross between a male lion (Panthera leo) and a female tiger (Panthera tigris). Thus, it has parents with the same genus but of different species. It is distinct from the similar hybrid tigon. While the Siberian tiger is the largest pure sub-species, ligers are believed to be the largest of all known extant felines.
Ligers exist only in captivity or zoo because the habitats of the parental species do not overlap in the wild. Historically, when the Asiatic Lion was prolific, the territories of lions and tigers did overlap and there are legends of ligers existing in the wild. Although ligers share characteristics of both from lion and tiger, they more closely resemble the lion, because of the dominant gene. Notably, ligers typically grow larger than either parent species, unlike tigons which tend to be about as large as a female tiger and is the cross between a male tiger and a lioness.
The history of ligers dates to at least the early 19th century in India. In 1798, Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire (1772–1844) made a colour plate of the offspring of a lion and a tiger.
In 1825, G. B. Whittaker made an engraving of liger cubs born in 1824. The parents and their three liger offspring are also depicted with their trainer in a 19th-century painting in the naïve style.
Two liger cubs born in 1837 were exhibited to King William IV and to his successor Queen Victoria. On 14 December 1900 and on 31 May 1901, Carl Hagenbeck wrote to zoologist James Cossar Ewart with details and photographs of ligers born at the Hagenbeck's Tierpark in Hamburg in 1897.
In Animal Life and the World of Nature (1902–1903), A.H. Bryden described Hagenbeck's "lion-tiger" hybrids:
It has remained for one of the most enterprising collectors and naturalists of our time, Mr. Carl Hagenbeck, not only to breed, but to bring successfully to a healthy maturity, specimens of this rare alliance between those two great and formidable felidae, the lion and tiger. The illustrations will indicate sufficiently how fortunate Mr. Hagenbeck has been in his efforts to produce these hybrids. The oldest and biggest of the animals shown is a hybrid born on the 11th May, 1897. This fine beast, now more than five years old, equals and even excels in his proportions a well-grown lion, measuring as he does from nose tip to tail 10 ft 2 inches in length, and standing only three inches less than 4 ft at the shoulder. A good big lion will weigh about 400 lb [...] the hybrid in question, weighing as it does no less than 467 lb, is certainly the superior of the most well-grown lions, whether wild-bred or born in a menagerie. This animal shows faint striping and mottling, and, in its characteristics, exhibits strong traces of both its parents. It has a somewhat lion-like head, and the tail is more like that of a lion than of a tiger. On the other hand, it has no trace of mane. It is a huge and very powerful beast.
In 1935, four ligers from two litters were reared in the Zoological Gardens of Bloemfontein, South Africa. Three of them, a male and two females, were still living in 1953. The male weighed 340 kg (750 lb) and stood a foot and a half (45 cm) taller than a full grown male lion at the shoulder.
Although ligers are more commonly found than tigons today, in At Home In The Zoo (1961), Gerald Iles wrote "For the record I must say that I have never seen a liger, a hybrid obtained by crossing a lion with a tigress. They seem to be even rarer than tigons."
Size and growth
The liger is often believed to represent the largest known cat in the world. Males reach a total length of 3 to 3.5 m, meaning they are bigger than large Siberian tiger males. Imprinted genes may be a factor contributing to huge liger size. These are genes that may or may not be expressed on the parent they are inherited from, and that occasionally play a role in issues of hybrid growth. For example, in some dog breed crosses, genes that are expressed only when maternally-inherited cause the young to grow larger than is typical for either parent breed. This growth is not seen in the paternal breeds, as such genes are normally "counteracted" by genes inherited from the female of the appropriate breed.
Other big cat hybrids can reach similar sizes; the litigon, a rare hybrid of a male lion and a female tigon, is roughly the same size as the liger, with a male named Cubanacan (at the Alipore Zoo in India) reaching 363 kg (800 lb). The extreme rarity of these second-generation hybrids may make it difficult to ascertain whether they are larger or smaller, on average, than the liger.
It is wrongly believed that ligers continue to grow throughout their lives due to hormonal issues. It may be that they simply grow far more during their growing years and take longer to reach their full adult size. Further growth in shoulder height and body length is not seen in ligers over 6 years old, same as both lions and tigers. Male ligers also have the same levels of testosterone on average as an adult male lion, yet are azoospermic in accordance with Haldane's rule. In addition, female ligers may also attain great size, weighing approximately 320 kg (705 lb) and reaching 3.05 m (10 ft) long on average, and are often fertile. In contrast, pumapards (hybrids between pumas and leopards) tend to exhibit dwarfism.
Shasta, a ligress (female liger) was born at the Hogle Zoo in Salt Lake City on 14 May 1948 and died in 1972 at age 24. Valley of the Kings animal sanctuary in Wisconsin had a male liger named Nook who weighed around 550 kg (1,213 lb), and died in 2007, at 21 years old. Hobbs, a male liger at the Sierra Safari Zoo in Reno, Nevada, lived to almost 15 years of age before succumbing to liver failure and weighed in at 450 kg (992 lb). This liger was born in 1943 and died in 1960. South Africa still has two ligers at its one zoo at Bloemfontein.
The fertility of hybrid big cat females is well documented across a number of different hybrids. This is in accordance with Haldane's rule: in hybrids of animals whose sex is determined by sex chromosomes, if one sex is absent, rare or sterile, it is the heterogametic sex (the one with two different sex chromosomes e.g. X and Y).
According to Wild Cats of the World (1975) by C. A. W. Guggisberg, ligers and tigons were long thought to be sterile: in 1943, a fifteen-year-old hybrid between a lion and an 'Island' tiger was successfully mated with a lion at the Munich Hellabrunn Zoo. The female cub, though of delicate health, was raised to adulthood.
In September 2012, the Russian Novosibirsk Zoo announced the birth of a "liliger", which is the offspring of a liger mother and a lion father. The cub was named Kiara. In 2013 the same pair of an African lion and a female liger produced three more female cubs.
Ligers have a tiger-like striped pattern that is very faint upon a lionesque tawny background. In addition they may inherit rosettes from the lion parent (lion cubs are rosetted and some adults retain faint markings). These markings may be black, dark brown or sandy. The background colour may be correspondingly tawny, sandy or golden. In common with tigers, their underparts are pale. The actual pattern and colour depends on which subspecies the parents were and on how the genes interact in the offspring.
White tigers have been crossed with lions to produce "white" (actually pale golden) ligers. In theory, white tigers could be crossed with white lions to produce white, very pale or even stripeless ligers. There are no black ligers. Very few melanistic tigers have ever been recorded, most being due to excessive markings (pseudo-melanism or abundism) rather than true melanism; no reports of black lions have ever been substantiated. Blue or Maltese Tigers are extremely endangered and rare, and may even no longer exist, but grey or blue ligers are possible, if exceedingly improbable. A liger can possibly be white, but the phenomenon is quite rare.
Due to being a composition of two separate cat species (lions and tigers), the liger suffers from various genetic defects such as infertility, or the inability to breed. Amongst the many other genetic defects include vulnerability to diseases and other health problems.
Breeding of ligers has been banned in many zoos and animal sanctuaries due to no conservation value of the hybrid, and the risk it poses on the tigress that gives birth to it. Keeping the two species separate has been standard procedure.
- "Liger – EB". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 1 February 2015.
- "Liger cubs nursed by dog in China's Xixiakou Zoo". BBC News Asia-Pacific. 24 May 2011. Retrieved 25 May 2011.
- "The Liger – Liger Facts: Meet The World's Biggest Cat". Liger Facts. Retrieved 2013-12-10.
- "Weights of Ligers, Lions and Tigers". Liger World. Retrieved 31 January 2015.
- "Ligers". Wildlife Waystation. Retrieved 31 January 2015.
- "Hercules, 922-Pound Liger, Is The World's Largest Living Cat (PHOTOS)". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 31 January 2015.
- Holsbeek, G.; Jooris, R. (2009). "Potential impact of genome exclusion by alien species in the hybridogenetic water frogs (Pelophylax esculentus complex)". Biological Invasions 12: 1. doi:10.1007/s10530-009-9427-2.
- Largiadèr, C. R. (2007). "Hybridization and Introgression Between Native and Alien Species". Biological Invasions. Ecological Studies 193. p. 275. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-36920-2_16. ISBN 978-3-540-77375-7.
- Ligers messybeast.com Retrieved 4 September 2012.
- Bryden, A.H. (contributor). "Animal Life and the World of Nature" (1902–1903, bound partwork).
- Iles, G. At Home In The Zoo (1961).
- Description of ligers at Bestiarium.kryptozoologie.net
- Description of ligers at Lairweb.org.nz
- Vratislav Mazák: Der Tiger. Westarp Wissenschaften; Auflage: 5 (April 2004), unveränd. Aufl. von 1983 ISBN 3-89432-759-6
- "Growth dysplasia in hybrid big cats". Retrieved 23 June 2006.
- Howard Hughes Medical Institute (30 April 2000). "HHMI News: Gene Tug-of-War Leads to Distinct Species". Retrieved 23 June 2006.
- "Tigon". messybeast.com. Retrieved 21 July 2010.
- Twila Van Leer (21 January 1996). "BABY LIGER BROUGHT NEW LIFE TO STRUGGLING ZOO". Deseret News. Retrieved 1 February 2015.
- Liger Facts
- Largest cat hybrid
- "Liger: Recorded Ages of the Ligers". Ligerworld.com. Retrieved 2013-12-10.
- Guggisberg, C. A. W. "Wild Cats of the World." (1975).
- Katia Andreassi (21 September 2012). ""Liliger" Born in Russia No Boon for Big Cats". National Geographic.
- Лигрица Зита во второй раз стала мамой [Ligritsa Zita for the second time became a mother] (in Russian). Novosibirsk Zoo. 16 June 2013.
- Guynup, Sharon. The mating game: ligers, zorses, wholphins, and other hybrid animals raise a beastly science question: what is a species?. missouri.edu
- Lovely, Karen R. (March 2009) Issues of captivity and conservation surrounding pantherine cats with a focus on the lion (Panthera leo) and the tiger (Panthera tigris). Thesis. Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, US
- "What is a 'liger' — and why is it illegal?". August 2010.
- Peters, G. "Comparative Investigation of Vocalisation in Several Felids" published in German in Spixiana-Supplement, 1978; (1): 1–206.
- Courtney, N. The Tiger, Symbol of Freedom. Quartet Books, London, 1980.
Panthera is a genus within the Felidae family that was named and first described by the German naturalist Oken in 1816. The British taxonomist Pocock revised the classification of this genus in 1916 as comprising the species tiger, lion, jaguar and leopard on the basis of cranial features. Results of genetic analysis indicate that the snow leopard also belongs to the Panthera, a classification that was accepted by IUCN assessors in 2008.
Only the tiger, lion, leopard and jaguar have the anatomical structure that enables them to roar. The primary reason for this was formerly assumed to be the incomplete ossification of the hyoid bone. However, new studies show the ability to roar is due to other morphological features, especially of the larynx. The snow leopard does not roar. Although it has an incomplete ossification of the hyoid bone, it lacks the special morphology of the larynx.
The word panther derives from classical Latin panthēra, itself from the ancient Greek pánthēr (πάνθηρ). The Greek pan- (πάν), meaning "all", and thēr (θήρ), meaning "prey" bears the meaning of "predator of all animals".
In Panthera species the dorsal profile of the skull is flattish or evenly convex. The frontal interorbital area is not noticeably elevated, and the area behind the elevation less steeply sloped. The basicranial axis is nearly horizontal. The inner chamber of the bullae is large, the outer small. The partition between them is close to the external auditory meatus. The convexly rounded chin is sloping.
Panthera probably evolved in Asia, but the roots of the genus remain unclear. Genetic studies indicate that pantherine cats diverged from the subfamily Felinae between six and ten million years ago. Fossil records that appear to belong within the Panthera genus reach only 2.0 to 3.8 million years back.
The snow leopard was initially seen at the base of Panthera, but newer molecular studies suggest that it is nestled within Panthera and is a sister species of the tiger. Many place the snow leopard within the genus Panthera, but there is currently no consensus as to whether the snow leopard should retain its own genus Uncia or be moved to Panthera uncia. Since 2008, the IUCN Red List lists it as Panthera uncia using Uncia uncia as a synonym.
Results of a mitogenomic study suggest the phylogeny can be represented as Neofelis nebulosa (Panthera tigris (Panthera onca (Panthera pardus, (Panthera leo, Panthera uncia)))). About Panthera separated from other felid species and then evolved into the several species of the genus. N. nebulosa appears to have diverged about , P. tigris about , P. uncia about and P. pardus about . Mitochondrial sequence data from fossils suggest that American lions (P. atrox) are a sister lineage to Eurasian cave lions (P. l. spelaea), diverging about .
The prehistoric cat Panthera onca gombaszogensis, often called European jaguar is probably closely related to the modern jaguar. The earliest evidence of the species was obtained at Olivola in Italy, and dates 1.6 million years.
During the 19th and 20th centuries, various explorers and staff of natural history museums suggested numerous subspecies, or at times called races, for all Panthera species. The taxonomist Pocock reviewed skins and skulls in the zoological collection of the Natural History Museum, London and grouped subspecies described, thus shortening the lists considerably. Since the mid 1980s, several Panthera species became subject of genetic research, mostly using blood samples of captive individuals. Study results indicate that many of the lion and leopard subspecies are questionable because of insufficient genetic distinction between them. Subsequently, it was proposed to group all African leopard populations to P. p. pardus and retain eight subspecific names for Asian leopard populations. Based on genetic research, it was suggested, to group all living sub-Saharan lion populations into P. l. leo. More recent genetic research, however, indicates that the Western and Central African lions form a different clade of lions and are perhaps more related to Asian lions than to lions from southern or eastern Africa. These populations have been largely ignored in previous studies. The black panther is not a distinct species, but is the common name for melanistic specimens of the genus, most often encountered in leopard and jaguar.
The genus Panthera comprises:
- Panthera tigris tiger
- Panthera tigris amoyensis South China tiger
- Panthera tigris sumatrae Sumatran tiger
- Panthera tigris tigris Bengal tiger
- Panthera tigris jacksoni Malayan tiger
- Panthera tigris corbetti Indochinese tiger
- Panthera tigris altaica Siberian tiger
- Panthera tigris virgata Caspian tiger †
- Panthera tigris balica Bali tiger †
- Panthera tigris sondaica Javan tiger †
- Panthera tigris acutidens †
- Panthera tigris trinilensis Trinil tiger †
- Panthera leo lion
- Panthera leo persica Asiatic lion
- Panthera leo leo African lion including:
- Panthera leo sinhaleyus Sri Lanka lion or Ceylon lion †
- Panthera leo spelaea Eurasian cave lion †
- Panthera leo fossilis Early Middle Pleistocene European cave lion †
- Panthera leo atrox American lion or North American cave lion †
- Panthera onca jaguar
- Panthera pardus leopard
- Panthera pardus pardus African leopard
- Panthera pardus orientalis Amur leopard
- Panthera pardus melas Javan leopard
- Panthera pardus nimr Arabian leopard
- Panthera pardus saxicolor Persian leopard, including P. p. tulliana Anatolian leopard
- Panthera pardus fusca Indian leopard
- Panthera pardus kotiya Sri Lanka leopard
- Panthera pardus delacouri Indochinese leopard
- Panthera pardus japonensis North China leopard
- Panthera pardus begoueni †
- Panthera pardus sickenbergi †
- Panthera pardus antiqua †
- Panthera pardus spelaea European Ice Age leopard †
- Panthera uncia or Uncia uncia Snow leopard
- Panthera uncia baikalensis-romanii Transbaikal snow leopard
- Panthera uncia uncia Northern snow leopard
- Panthera uncia uncioides Southern snow leopard
Taxonomic placing is uncertain for the extinct fossil Panthera species:
- Panthera blytheae - prehistoric relative of snow leopard
- Panthera crassidens – probably identical with another felid taxon
- Panthera palaeosinensis – Pleistocene pantherine, probably ancestral to the tiger
- Panthera schreuderi – prehistoric cat, probably junior synonym of European jaguar
- Panthera shawi - a prehistoric lion with leopard spots.
- Panthera toscana Tuscany lion or Tuscany jaguar – probably junior synonym of European jaguar
- Panthera youngi – a prehistoric Chinese lion-like cat
- Panthera zdanskyi - prehistoric relative of tiger
|External identifiers for Panthera|
|Encyclopedia of Life||14134|
|Also found in: Wikispecies|
- Wozencraft, W. C. (2005). "Order Carnivora". In Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 546–548. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.
- Oken, L. (1816). Lehrbuch der Zoologie, 2. Abtheilung. August Schmid & Comp., Jena.
- Pocock, R. I. (1916). The Classification and Generic Nomenclature of F. uncia and its Allies. The Annals and Magazine of Natural History: zoology, botany, and geology. Series 8, Volume XVIII: 314–316.
- Johnson, W. E., Eizirik, E., Pecon-Slattery, J., Murphy, W. J., Antunes, A., Teeling, E. & O'Brien, S. J. (2006). "The Late Miocene radiation of modern Felidae: A genetic assessment.". Science 311 (5757): 73–77. doi:10.1126/science.1122277. PMID 16400146.
- Jackson, R., Mallon, D., McCarthy, T., Chundaway, R. A., Habib, B. (2008). "Panthera uncia". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature.
- Nowak, R. M. (1999). Walker's Mammals of the World. Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 0-8018-5789-9.
- Liddell, H. G. and R. Scott (1940). "πάνθηρ". A Greek-English Lexicon, revised and augmented. Oxford: Clarendon Press.
- OUP (2002). "Panther". Oxford English Dictionary. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Pocock, R. I. (1939). The fauna of British India, including Ceylon and Burma. Mammalia. – Volume 1. Taylor and Francis, London.
- Turner, A. (1987). "New fossil carnivore remains from the Sterkfontein hominid site (Mammalia: Carnivora)". Annals of the Transvaal Museum 34 (15): 319–347.
- Davis, B. W.; Li, G.., Murphy, W.J. (Jul 2010). "Supermatrix and species tree methods resolve phylogenetic relationships within the big cats, Panthera (Carnivora: Felidae)". Molecular Phylogenetic Evolution 56 (1): 64–76. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2010.01.036. PMID 20138224.
- Yu, L. Zhang, Y. P. (2005). "Phylogenetic studies of pantherine cats (Felidae) based on multiple genes, with novel application of nuclear beta-fibrinogen intron 7 to carnivores". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 35 (2): 483–495. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2005.01.017. PMID 15804417.
- Janczewski, D. N., Modi, W. S., Stephens, J. C., O'Brien, S. J. (1996). "Molecular Evolution of Mitochondrial 12S RNA and Cytochrome b Sequences in the Pantherine Lineage of Felidae". Molecular Biology and Evolution 12 (4): 690–707. PMID 7544865. Retrieved 2006-08-06.
- Johnson, W. E., O'Brien, S. J. (1997). "Phylogenetic reconstruction of the Felidae using 16S rRNA and NADH-5 mitochondrial genes". Journal of Molecular Evolution 44: S98–S116. doi:10.1007/PL00000060. PMID 9071018.
- Wei L, Wu X, Zhu L, Jiang Z (2010). "Mitogenomic analysis of the genus Panthera". Science China Life Sciences 54 (10): 917–930. doi:10.1007/s11427-011-4219-1. PMID 22038004.
- Barnett, R.; Shapiro, B.; Barnes, I.; Yo, S. Y.W.; Burger, J.; Yamaguchi, N.; Higham, T. F.G.; Wheeler, H. T. et al. (April 2009). "Phylogeography of lions (Panthera leo ssp.) reveals three distinct taxa and a late Pleistocene reduction in genetic diversity". Molecular Ecology 18 (8): 1668–1677. doi:10.1111/j.1365-294X.2009.04134.x. PMID 19302360. Retrieved 2011-11-23.
- Hemmer, H.; Kahlke, R. D.; Vekua, A. K. (2001). "The Jaguar – Panthera onca gombaszoegensis (Kretzoi, 1938) (Carnivora: Felidae) in the late lower pleistocene of Akhalkalaki (south Georgia; Transcaucasia) and its evolutionary and ecological significance". Geobios 34 (4): 475–486. doi:10.1016/s0016-6995(01)80011-5.
- Pocock, R. I. (1930). "The panthers and ounces of Asia". Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 34 (1): 65–82.
- Pocock, R. I. (1932). "The leopards of Africa". Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1932 (2): 543–541.
- Pocock, R. I. (1939). "The races of jaguar (Panthera onca)". Novitates Zoologicae 41: 406–422.
- O’Brien, S. J., Martenson, J. S., Packer, C., Herbst, L., de Vos, V., Joslin, P., Ott-Joslin, J., Wildt, D. E. and Bush, M. (1987). "Biochemical genetic variation in geographic isolates of African and Asiatic lions". National Geographic Research 3 (1): 114–124.
- Miththapala, S.; Seidensticker, J.; O'Brien, S. J. (1996). "Phylogeographic subspecies recognition in leopards (Panthera pardus): Molecular genetic variation". Conservation Biology 10: 1115–1132. doi:10.1046/j.1523-1739.1996.10041115.x.
- Uphyrkina, O.; Johnson, W. E.; Quigley, H. B.; Miquelle, D. G.; Marker, L.; Bush, M. E.; O'Brien, S. J. (2001). "Phylogenetics, genome diversity and origin of modern leopard, Panthera pardus". Molecular Ecology 10 (11): 2617–2633. doi:10.1046/j.0962-1083.2001.01350.x. PMID 11883877.
- Dubach, J.; Patterson, B. D.; Briggs, M. B.; Venzke, K.; Flamand, J.; Stander, P.; Scheepers, L.; Kays, R. W. (2005). "Molecular genetic variation across the southern and eastern geographic ranges of the African lion, Panthera leo". Conservation Genetics 6 (1): 15–24. doi:10.1007/s10592-004-7729-6.
- Laura Bertola, Hans de Iongh, Klaas Vrieling (2011). Researchers confirm West and Central African lion is different from other lions. University of Leiden. Institute of Environmental Sciences (CML). Faculty of Science. Last Modified: 01-04-2011.
- Bertola, L. D.; Van Hooft, W. F.; Vrieling, K.; Uit De Weerd, D. R.; York, D. S.; Bauer, H.; Prins, H. H. T.; Funston, P. J.; Udo De Haes, H. A.; Leirs, H.; Van Haeringen, W. A.; Sogbohossou, E.; Tumenta, P. N.; De Iongh, H. H. (2011). "Genetic diversity, evolutionary history and implications for conservation of the lion (Panthera leo) in West and Central Africa". Journal of Biogeography 38 (7): 1356. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2699.2011.02500.x.
- Robinson, R. (1970). "Inheritance of black form of the leopard Panthera pardus". Genetica 41 (1): 190–197. doi:10.1007/bf00958904. PMID 5480762.
- Eizirik, E., Yuhki, N., Johnson, W. E., Menotti-Raymond, M., Hannah, S. S., O'Brien, S. J. (2003). "Molecular Genetics and Evolution of Melanism in the Cat Family". Current Biology 13 (5): 448–453. doi:10.1016/S0960-9822(03)00128-3. PMID 12620197.
- Mazák, Ji H.; Christiansen, Per; Kitchener, Andrew C. (2011). "Oldest Known Pantherine Skull and Evolution of the Tiger". PLoS ONE 6 (10): e25483. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0025483. PMC 3189913. PMID 22016768.
- Luo, S.J., Kim, J.H., Johnson, W.E., Walt Jvd, Martenson, J. et al. (2004). "Phylogeography and Genetic Ancestry of Tigers (Panthera tigris)". PLoS Biol 2 (12): e442. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0020442. PMC 534810. PMID 15583716.
- Jackson, P., Nowell, K. (2008). "Panthera tigris ssp. virgata". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature.
- Jackson, P. Nowell, K. (2008). "Panthera tigris ssp. balica". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature.
- Jackson, P., Nowell, K. (2008). "Panthera tigris ssp. sondaica". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2012.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature.
- Hooijer, D. A. (1947). Pleistocene remains of Panthera tigris (Linnaeus) subspecies from Wanhsien, Szechwan, China, compared with fossil and recent tigers from other localities. American Museum Novitates no. 1346.
- Brongersma, L. D. (1935). "Notes on some recent and fossil cats, chiefly from the Malay Archipelago". Zoologische Mededelingen 18: 1–89.
- Barnett, R., Yamaguchi, N., Barnes, I., Cooper, A. (2006). "Lost populations and preserving genetic diversity in the lion Panthera leo: Implications for its ex situ conservation". Conservation Genetics 7 (4): 507–514. doi:10.1007/s10592-005-9062-0.
- Manamendra-Arachchi, K., Pethiyagoda, R., Dissanayake, R., Meegaskumbura, M. (2005). A second extinct big cat from the late Quaternary of Sri Lanka. The Raffles Bulletin of Zoology, Supplement 12: 423–434.
- Tchernov, E., Tsoukala, E. (1997). Middle Pleistocene (early Toringian) carnivore remains from northern Israel. Quaternary Research 48:122–136.
- Harington, C. R. (1996). Pleistocene mammals of the Yukon Territory. Ph.D. dissertation, University of Alberta, Edmonton.
- Khorozyan, I. . (2008). "Panthera pardus ssp. saxicolor". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.1. International Union for Conservation of Nature.
- O'Regan, H., Turner, A (2004). "Biostratigraphic and palaeoecological implications of new fossil felid material from the Plio-Pleistocene site of Tegelen, the Netherlands". Palaeontology 47 (5): 1181–1193. doi:10.1111/j.0031-0239.2004.00400.x.
- A. Turner: The big cats and their fossil relatives. Columbia University Press, 1997.ISBN 0-231-10229-1
The Masai lion or East African lion (Panthera leo nubica) is a lion subspecies that is found in eastern Africa. The type specimen is described as being from "Nubia". The subspecies includes previously recognized subspecies like massaica, which was initially described from the Tanganyika Territory in Eastern Africa.
Neumann first described the Masai lion as being less cobby with longer legs and less curved backs than other lion subspecies. Males have moderate tufts of hair on the knee joint, and their manes are not full but look like combed backwards.
Male East African lions are generally 2.5–3.0 metres (8.2–9.8 feet) long including the tail. Lionesses are generally smaller, at only 2.3–2.6 metres (7.5–8.5 feet). In weight, males are generally 145–205 kg (320–452 pounds), and females are 100–165 kg (220–364 pounds). Lions, male or female, have a shoulder height of 0.9–1.10 metres (3.0–3.6 feet).
Male Masai lions are known for a great range of mane types. Mane development is related to age: older males have more extensive manes than younger ones; manes continue to grow up to the age of four to five years, long after lions have become sexually mature. Males living in the highlands above 800 m (2,600 ft) altitude develop heavier manes than lions in the more humid and warmer lowlands of eastern and northern Kenya. They have scanty manes or are even completely maneless.
Lions in the Serengeti highlands have often very big manes
Lions mating at Masai Mara
Mature male lion in Amboseli National Park with intermediate mane development
Lion in the Samburu National Reserve, Kenya
Lion pair at Selous Game Reserve
Distribution and habitat
Masai lions were first described on the basis of observations in northern Uganda, near Kavirondo and in southern Kenya, as well as near Lake Manyara, around Mount Kilimanjaro and in the Tanga Region.
The German zoologist Neumann observed lions in Eastern Africa, and proposed the trinomen Felis leo massaica in 1900 based on morphological differences compared with lions from Somalia. His type specimens consist of one male killed near Kibaya, and one female killed at the Gurui River. A decade later, the Swedish zoologist Lönnberg described two lion specimen from the environs of Mount Kilimanjaro under the name of Felis leo sabakiensis that were killed during a Swedish zoological expedition to East Africa. In 1914, the American zoologist Heller described the Abyssinian lion under the name Felis leo roosevelti on the basis of a male lion presented to President Roosevelt allegedly from the vicinity of Addis Abeba. In 1939, the American zoologist Allen recognized the trinomen Felis leo massaica as valid, and subordinated F. l. sabakiensis and F. l. roosevelti to this subspecies.
Pocock subordinated lions to the genus Panthera in 1930 when he wrote about Asian lions. Ellerman and Morrison-Scott recognized just two lion subspecies, namely the Asiatic P. l. persica and the African P. l. leo, known as the Barbary lion at the time. Various authors recognized between seven and 10 African lion subspecies. Until 2005, some authors considered P. l. massaica as a valid taxon; some considered it synonymous with P. l. nubica described by Blainville in 1843 from Nubia.
- Wozencraft, W. C. (2005). "Order Carnivora". In Wilson, D. E.; Reeder, D. M. Mammal Species of the World (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 532–628. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.
- Allen, G. M. (1939). A Checklist of African Mammals. Bulletin of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard College 83: 1–763.
- Haas, S. K., Hayssen, V., Krausman, P. R. (2005). Panthera leo. Mammalian Species (762): 1–11.
- Neumann, O. (1900). Die von mir in den Jahren 1892–95 in Ost- und Central-Afrika, speciell in den Massai-Ländern und den Ländern am Victoria Nyansa gesammelten und beobachteten Säugethiere. Zoologische Jahrbücher. Abtheilung für Systematik, Geographie und Biologie der Thiere 13 (VI): 529–562.
- Gnoske, T. P., Celesia, G. G., Kerbis Peterhans, J. C. (2006). Dissociation between mane development and sexual maturity in lions (Panthera leo): solution to the Tsavo riddle?. Journal of Zoology 270(4): 551–560. Abstract
- Lönnberg, E. (1910). Mammals. In: Sjöstedt, Y. (ed.) Wissenschaftliche Ergebnisse der Schwedischen Zoologischen Expedition nach dem Kilimandjaro, dem Meru und den umgebenden Massaisteppen Deutsch-Ostafrikas 1905-1906. Volume 1. Königlich schwedische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Uppsala.
- Heller, E. 1914. New races of carnivores and baboons from equatorial Africa and Abyssinia. Smithsonian Miscellaneous Collections 61(19): 1–12.
- Pocock, R. I. (1930). The lions of Asia. Journal of the Bombay Natural Historical Society 34: 638–665.
- Ellerman, J. R., and T. C. S. Morrison-Scott. (1966). Checklist of Palaearctic and Indian Mammals 1758 to 1946. Second edition. British Museum (Natural History), London.
- Hemmer, H. (1974). Untersuchungen zur Stammesgeschichte der Pantherkatzen (Pantherinae). III. Zur Artgeschichte des Löwen Panthera (Panthera) leo (Linnaeus 1758). Veröffentlichungen der Zoologischen Staatssammlung München, 17: 167–280.
- Meester, J., Setzer, H. W. (1977). The mammals of Africa. An identification manual. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC.
- O’Brien, S. J., Martenson, J. S., Packer, C., Herbst, L., de Vos, V., Joslin, P., Ott-Joslin, J., Wildt, D. E. and Bush, M. (1987). "Biochemical genetic variation in geographic isolates of African and Asiatic lions". National Geographic Research 3 (1): 114–124.
- Dubach, J., Patterson, B. D., Briggs, M. B., Venzke, K., Flamand, J., Stander, P., Scheepers, L. and Kays, R. W. (2005). Molecular genetic variation across the southern and eastern geographic ranges of the African lion, Panthera leo. Conservation Genetics 6(1): 15.
- Bauer, H., Nowell, K. Packer, C. (2012). "Panthera leo". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature.
- Barnett, R., Yamaguchi, N., Barnes, I., Cooper, A. (2006). The origin, current diversity and future conservation of the modern lion (Panthera leo). Proceedings of the Royal Society B 273 (1598): 2119–2125. doi:10.1098/rspb.2006.3555 PMID 16901830
A tigon // or tiglon // is a hybrid cross between a male tiger (Panthera tigris) and a lioness (Panthera leo). Thus, it has parents with the same genus but of different species. The tigon is not currently as common as the converse hybrid, the liger; however, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Gerald Iles wrote that he had been able to obtain three tigons, but he had never seen a liger.
The tigon's genome includes genetic components of both parents. Tigons can exhibit visible characteristics from both parents: they can have both spots from the mother (lions carry genes for spots—lion cubs are spotted and some adults retain faint markings) and stripes from the father. Any mane that a male tigon may have will appear shorter and less noticeable than a lion's mane and is closer in type to the ruff of a male tiger. It is a common misconception that tigons are smaller than lions or tigers. They do not exceed the size of their parent species because they inherit growth-inhibitory genes from the lioness mother, but they do not exhibit any kind of dwarfism or miniaturization; they often weigh around 180 kilograms (400 lb).
Guggisberg wrote that ligers and tigons were long thought to be sterile; in 1943, however, a fifteen-year-old hybrid between a lion and an "Island" tiger was successfully mated with a lion at the Munich Hellabrunn Zoo. The female cub, although of delicate health, was raised to adulthood.
At the Alipore Zoo in India, a female tigon named Rudhrani, born in 1971, was successfully mated to an Asiatic Lion named Debabrata. The rare, second generation hybrid was called a litigon //. Rudhrani produced seven litigons in her lifetime. Some of these reached impressive sizes—a litigon named Cubanacan weighed at least 363 kilograms (800 lb), stood 1.32 metres (4.3 ft) at the shoulder, and was 3.5 metres (11 ft) in total length.
Reports also exist of the similar titigon //, resulting from the cross between a female tigon and a male tiger. Titigons resemble golden tigers but with less contrast in their markings. A female tigon born in 1978, named Noelle, shared an enclosure in the Shambala Preserve with a male Siberian Tiger called Anton, due to the keepers' belief that she was sterile. In 1983 Noelle produced a titigon named Nathaniel. As Nathaniel was three-quarters tiger, he had darker stripes than Noelle and vocalized more like a tiger, rather than with the mix of sounds used by his mother. Being only about quarter-lion, Nathaniel did not grow a mane. Nathaniel died of cancer at the age of eight or nine years. Noelle also developed cancer and died soon after.
- Liger. snopes.com. Retrieved on 2013-09-17.
- Questions about Animals. Gk12.iastate.edu. Retrieved on 2013-09-17.
- Liger. Basically the coolest animal ever. Bred for their skills in magic. iam.colum.edu
- Techné v6n3 – Patenting and Transgenic Organisms: A Philosophical Exploration. Scholar.lib.vt.edu. Retrieved on 2013-09-17.
- Guggisberg, C. A. W. (1975) Wild Cats of the World, Taplinger Pub., ISBN 0795001282
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (February 2014)|
The taliger is a hybrid cross between a male tiger (Panthera tigris) and a ligress (which is the hybrid offspring of a male lion and female tiger). The world's first taligers were born on 16 August 2007 at The Garold Wayne Interactive Zoological Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma.
Although male tiglons and ligers are sterile, female hybrids can produce cubs. As with ligers, taligers grow to a size that is typically larger than either of their tiger and lion forebears. Large males can grow up to 400 kg and 3.50 meters in length, while the females may grow up to 250 kg and 3 meters in length.
In the first litter of taligers, the sire - Kahun - was a white bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) and the dam - Beauty - was a liger. Five cubs were born to that litter - four male and one female - named Tanyaro, Yun Yi, Monique, and two others that were moved to other facilities.
On 7 March 2013, a second set of taliger cubs were again born at The Garold Wayne Interactive Zoological Park in Wynnewood, Oklahoma. In this event, the sire - Noah - was a siberian tiger (Panthera tigris altaica) and the dam - Lizzy - was a liger. Three cubs were born to that litter.
- "Liger: Size and growth". Wikipedia. 18 August 2003. Retrieved 9 March 2013.
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (October 2009)|
A leopon // is a hybrid resulting from the crossing of a male leopard with a lioness. The head of the animal is similar to that of a lion while the rest of the body carries similarities to leopards. These hybrids are produced in captivity and are unlikely to occur in the wild.
The first documented leopon was bred at Kolhapur, India in 1910. Its skin was sent to Reginald Innes Pocock by Walter Samuel Millard, the Secretary of the Bombay Natural History Society. It was a cross between a large leopard and a lioness. Two cubs were born, one of which died aged 2.5 months and the other was still living when Pocock described it in 1912. Pocock wrote that it was spotted like a leopard, but that the spots on its sides were smaller and closer set than those of an Indian leopard and were brown and indistinct like the fading spots of a juvenile lion. The spots on the head, spine, belly and legs were black and distinct. The tail was spotted on the topside and striped underneath and had a blackish tip with longer hairs. The underside was dirty white, the ears were fawn and had a broad black bar but did not have the white spot found in leopards. Pocock wrote that the closest he had previously seen to this type of hybrid was the lijagulep (Congolese Spotted Lion) bred in Chicago.
Based on the data from the Japanese cats, leopons are larger than leopards and combine features from the leopard and lion. They have brown, rather than black, spots and tufted tails. They will climb like leopards and seem to enjoy water, also like the leopard. Male leopons may have sparse manes about 20 cm long.
They have been bred in zoos in Japan, Germany, and Italy (the latter was a "reverse leopon" i.e. from a male lion and a leopardess). Karl Hagenbeck, who produced many different hybrids, recorded the birth of leopons at the Hamburg Tierpark in Germany, but none survived to maturity. A leopon skin and skull at the British Museum comes from the animal bred at Kolhapur Zoo in India and was donated by Lt. Col. F.W. Wodehouse of the Junior United Services sometime between 1920 and 1940.
The most successful leopon program was at Koshien Hanshin Park in Nishinomiya City, Japan. A lioness called Sonoko was mated by a leopard called Kaneo. The lioness voluntarily assumed a position on her side to allow the much smaller leopard to mount her. A litter of 2 hybrids was born in 1959 and 3 more were born in 1962. In captivity, the normally solitary male leopard remained with the family (social behavior is sometimes seen in captive specimens of normally solitary big cats). The hybrids proved to be sterile and the last one died in 1985. However, later leopons have successfully fathered cubs with liguars, hybrids between a male lion and a female jaguar. The resulting animal is called a leoliguar. The program of cross-breeding was popular with the public, but it was criticised in zoological and animal welfare circles.
P. L. Florio published a report "Birth of a Lion x Leopard Hybrid in Italy" in 1982 (this refers to the "reverse leopon" also known as a lipard or liard).
- "HYBRIDS BETWEEN LEOPARDS AND LIONS". Retrieved 16 September 2014.
- R I Pocock: (letter), "The Field", 2 November 1912.
- P L Florio: "Birth of a Lion x Leopard Hybrid in Italy", International-Zoo-News, 1983; 30(2): 4-6
- Hiroyuki Doi & Barbara Reynolds, "The Story of Leopons", GP Putnams, 1967
- Hahn, Emily, "Animal Gardens", Doubleday, 1967
|It has been suggested that Lili (feline) be merged into this article. (Discuss) Proposed since November 2014.|
The first known hybrid, a female liliger named Kiara, was born at the Novosibirsk Zoo in Russia, in September 2012. Kiara was born to 8-year-old female liger Zita and male African lion Samson. Male tigons and ligers are sterile, but female hybrids can produce cubs. On May 16, 2013 the same couple produced three more female liligers: Luna, Sandra, and Eva A liliger was born in the United States from a male lion named Simba and a female liger named Akaria at 6:18 am on November 29, 2013 at The Garold Wayne Interactive Zoological Foundation in Oklahoma. At approximately 3 am on November 30, 2013, the ligress gave birth to two more cubs.
Craig Packer, director of the Lion Research Center at the University of Minnesota has said "In terms of conservation, it's so far away from anything, it's kind of pointless to even say it's irrelevant". The Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the organisation responsible for accrediting zoos in North America, neither approves of nor breeds the animals as they focus on the conservation of wildlife and programs serving that purpose.
- The Moscow Times. "Rare 'Liliger' Born to Lion, Liger Couple". Retrieved 11 September 2012.
- BBC News. "Siberian zoo breeds the world's first Liliger". Retrieved 18 September 2012.
- Уникальное пополнение коллекции Новосибирского зоопарка [A unique complement to the collection of the Novosibirsk Zoo] (in Russian). Novosibirsk Zoo. September 10, 2012..
- Лигрица Зита во второй раз стала мамой [Ligritsa Zita for the second time became a mother] (in Russian). Novosibirsk Zoo. 16 June 2013.
- "how Russian liger gave birth to four liligers" [Liger Queen]. Russia Beyond the Headlines. 22 July 2013.
- ""Liliger" Born in Russia No Boon for Big Cats" [Unnatural mix-and-match felines have no conservation purpose, experts say.]. National Geographic. 21 September 2012.
|This felid-related article is a stub. You can help Wikipedia by expanding it.|
EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.
To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!