Amazing Facts About Ligers

Ligers are the biggest cats in the world. They are the result of cross breeding two different species: lions and tigers. Actually, a liger is a hybrid cross between a male lion and a female tiger. Currently, cross breeding does not occur into the wild, as these two species do not live in the same environment. It only takes place in zoos and in captivity.


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Ligers are without a doubt fascinating animals. There are numerous interesting things you should know about ligers. Below are listed just some of them.

  • A liger is a carnivore animal, being the biggest meat consuming carnivore in the world.
  • Ligers are bigger than both their parents. Lions and tigers are less than half their size.
  • The word liger emerged from the combination of two English words, lion and tiger
  • The first liger cub in the world was born by accident back in 1799. Actually, most ligers that have been bread until now were the result of accident.
  • The first liger in the United States was born in 1948.
  • Nowadays, there are few ligers left in the world. Last statistics indicated a number of about 200 individuals representing this species.


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  • A normal liger can weight no less than 900 pounds. These animals have a gigantic body structure. Lions are able to reach only a maximum weight of 500 pounds, while tigers are capable of reaching about 600 pounds.
  • The heaviest liger known to have ever lived weighted about 1600 pounds.
  • The mouth of a liger is about as big as the shoulders of a man.
  • Ligers are bigger in weight and length than both of their parents. 
  • Hercules is the biggest cat in the world. He weights about 900 pounds.

  • Nook is known to be one of biggest cats who has ever lived. The liger died in 2007.
  • Why are ligers able to grow so much bigger than lions and tigers is a question that has constantly preoccupied researchers. Ligers are known to grow much faster due to the lack of growth inhibiting hormones.
  • Commonly, a 60 days old liger weights about 16 pounds, while a tiger cub will weight only 9 pounds. 
  • Ligers grow at a rate of about 1 pound per day.


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  • At a single sitting, a liger is capable of eating no less than 100 pounds of meat. However, a liger is commonly feed with only 25 to 30 pounds of meat per day. Larger quantities of food can determine these animals to be obese. 
  • Ligers are very fast animals, despite their size. A liger is believed to be capable of reaching a maximum speed of 60 miles per hour.
  • Until now, there has been no evidence that ligers exist into the wild. As lions and tigers are enemies in the wild, mating can be very difficult, although not impossible. 
  • The body structure of a liger resembles that of lions.
  • The tail of a liger resembles that of a tiger.


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  • Ligers are highly socialized animals, such as lions.
  • Ligers love to swim, characteristic inherited from tigers.
  • Ligers are believed to have inherited what is best from both lions and tigers.
  • Due to their impressive size, ligers are thought to develop a series of health problems.
  • Some specialists consider that ligers have a very small span of life. Still, there is no solid evidence to prove that.
  • In many cases, liger cubs die soon after their birth. Still, there are numerous cubs born healthy. The maximum recorded age for a liger is 24 years. Shasta the liger lived for that long.


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  • There are some speculations that ligers are more prone to blindness than lions and tigers. However, the hypothesis is not true.
  • A tigress usually requires a C-sections to be able to give birth to a liger because of the impressive size of the cub.
  • Most ligers are sterile. However, in 1943 a female liger was able to give birth to a beautiful cub. In 2012, the first liliger was born in a zoo in Russia. 

There is no doubt in the fact that ligers are impressive animals. They surely are the most interesting new species of animals which has appeared in the last three centuries.