What Do Siberian Tigers Eat – Amur Tiger Diet and Eating Habits

UNLIKE its Asian cousins, Amur tiger has quite unique diet and eating habits perhaps due to its aloof habitat. Previously Siberian tigers thought to rely pretty much on big wild cattle but now they are beginning to take on small ungulates such as deer. However, they do occasionally eat small animals such as pikas, salmon, hares, and rabbits. Perhaps you might like to know more as to what do Amur tigers eat in the natural habitat.

What Do Siberian Tigers Eat – Siberian Tiger Diet

Amur tigers are known to consume animals such as Siberian musk deer, Siberian roe deer, wild boar, long-tailed goral, Manchurian sika deer, moose, Ussuri brown bear, and Manchurian wapiti—these are all part of the staple Russian tigers’ staple diet. Amur tigers will also prey on large animals including brown bear cubs or Asian bears but they do not usually prefer animals such as this.

Wild boars are abundantly found in the oak forests so tigers prey on these animals. The reason why brown bears can sometimes confront Siberian tigers is that they both feed on elk and moose. Tigers will find their next prey for almost over a week. In winter however they kill animals every 4 to 5 days. Amur tigers are known to eat as much as 17.4 lbs a day.

what do siberian tigers eat
Captive tigers grow healthy for they are fed just about every day but wild individuals aren’t so lucky. PHOTOGRAPH BY MARK LEONG, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE

Secondary Prey

Over the past few decades, Siberian tigers have struggled to find their primary prey in their native habitat. The population of ungulates is on a declining trend. As such the tiger begins to take on much bigger prey that is bears. Scientists have found out that tigers have preyed on brown bear cubs alongside Asian bears. However, Asian black bears are less so often preyed on since they are excellent climbers. Since brown bears prefer to live in open habitats tigers find them relatively easy to prey in comparison to black bears.

They will ambush large prey such as bears. Amur tigers mainly grab bears from the chin followed by the bite on their spinal column. Tigers do not often consume adult bears. Bears make up 2.1% of the tiger’s annual diet. According to scientists, tigers also imitate the voice of black bears to call out bear cubs.

European lynx is yet another prey that occasionally becomes the part of the tiger’s diet. Scientists have found remains of lynx into the stomach of a dead tiger but they haven’t probably witnessed live hunting. Scientists believe that tigers attempt to eliminate the lynx in the first place but if it doesn’t (escape) then the cat goes for the attack. This shows that European lynx is the least preferred prey.

Siberian tigers do not usually chase wolves but the population decline of latter shows that they do. Wolves are scavengers so they take advantage of a tiger’s killing. This indeed brings them closer to tigers.

What Do Siberian Tigers Eat in the Wild – video

I'm excited to share with you my passion for these elusive yet majestic creatures dwelling on earth. This richly illustrated work brings me close to Russia's iconic big cat, so I could explore as to how it lives and how it interacts with others of its own kind.


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