La Juje Project

created 2012


 1. What will happen if tigers became extinct?


If tigers disappeared from our planet, I think every great wildlife lover would find it horrific and terrible. The fact that those beautiful and majestic animals would cease to exist  would be just dramatic. Of course it would not be the end of the world, but a great tragedy for our planet.

You may think that if the Tiger became extinct, it wouldn't be very important to people who do not care about wildlife. I think it's wrong. 

Tigers have always been very symbolic in the Chinese culture. Not only are they one of the twelve years' animals (arriving third in the race after the rat and the ox) but there is also a Chinese God called Shijin which is a white tiger. What would happen if tigers disappeared? What would happen to the Chinese culture? Of course we can speak of them as we speak of, for example, dragons, but I guess it wouldn't be the same.

And what about children? As kids, we think of tigers as a very known animal, the king of the jungle! What of the next generation? What is a zoo without a tiger? 

We just cannot speak of tigers as we now speak of dinosaurs. We just can't.

2. Why are the tigers disappearing?

Tigers are on the edge of extinction. This is a fact which we must admit. Only a century ago, over 100,000 tigers roamed their territories freely, without great dangers threatening them. Now, a tiger in the wild is a rare view. There are, indeed, only about 3200 wild tigers left. About 93% less than during the 20th century. This leads to the question: Why are the tigers disappearing? 

Well, there are a few reasons, but all based around one main danger: poaching. 

Poachers have a few reasons to kill those beautiful creatures.

  • tiger skin is very valuable. One adult tiger skin costs about $35,000 which is about £22,000. The price is constantly rising due to the diminishing number of tigers left. 
  • In the world, Chinese medicine is used more and more often. As beneficial as it may be for us, it often uses endangered animals' body parts, and this is especially true with the Tiger . As you may see on the image I found, every single part of the tiger can be used in Chinese medicine. What is quite astounding about this Chinese medical science is that they believe that with, for example, the tiger's brain, we can cure laziness. That sounds odd! I am myself quite lazy and I can therefore say that when I'm lazy and I want to stay in bed, it's not because I am ill or anything, it is because I want to be comfortable. I don't see how a tiger's brain can cure that. 
Another reason for the Tiger's walk towards extinction is the way we humans want to become masters of the planet. Well, to be honest, we already are. But we always want more. And when we want more, animals have less. 
Animals' territories are important for them. They need space to hunt, to reproduce, to live. And if we take that from them, what is left but to trespass?
Tigers don't have enough space to live on. They need to travel long distances to hunt usually. But with humans cutting down trees and their forests shrinking, this hunt is impossible without being exposed in the open, which means exposed to poachers.


3. What you can do 

There are several ways to help tigers survive in the wild. 

  • You can sign petitions which will be sent to people who will be able to act. Here are some petitions that you may sign:
  • You can also donate money to wildlife charities
  • You can adopt a tiger on WWF:

Facts about tigers

Tigers are the biggest big cats. They are easily recognizable, with their short striped fur.
Tigers are not from the African continent as people often think. They are found in Asia, throughout India and China, even up to Russia (Siberian tigers). They live about 25 years, which is quite old for an animal. The tiger (or panthera tigris) can reach the lenght of 3.3 metres. 



1. What will happen if tigers became extinct?

2. Facts about why the tigers are disappearing

3. What you can do to help the tigers' survival

4. Facts about tigers







<-- drawing of a tiger, Juliette Hammer, 2014

Tigers in chinese medecine ^ google images