- Tigers utilize a variety of vocalizations to communicate over long distances. Roaring is produced in a variety of situations such as taking down large prey, signaling sexual receptivity and females calling to their young. These roars may be heard from distances over 3 km (1.8 mi.).
Tigers use a variety of vocalizations to communicate with one another.
- Moaning vocalizations are described as a subdued roar made while tigers are calmly walking with their heads in a downward position. This vocalization is audible for distances less than 400 m (440 yd.).
- Chuffing are friendly vocalizations that generally consist of a soft brrr sound. These vocalizations are primarily used for greetings between tigers and only audible at close range.
- Tigers use their tails to communicate with one another. A tiger is relaxed if their tail is loosely hanging. Aggression is displayed by rapidly moving the tail from side to side or by holding it low with occasional intense twitches.
- Tigers may enhance their olfactory communication by using visual markings such as scrapes on the ground and trees.
A Bengal tiger enhancing its olfactory communication
by making scratches on a tree.
Scent & Touch
- Adult males and females both communicate to one another by marking their territories. An adult tiger will usually define the boundary of its territory by spraying urine because of the strong odor associated with it can last up to 40 days but they may also use feces for marking.
- All cats, including tigers, have a distinct scent associated with them due to their individualized scent glands. The individualized scent helps cubs track their mother's path and serves to identify particular individuals. Cats have scent glands between their toes, tail, anus, head, chin, lips, cheeks, and facial whiskers. A common behavior of the domestic cat is rubbing against its caregiver's legs, face and furniture. The cat's intention is to leave its individualized scent to communicate with other animals its territory and belongings. The scientific community is currently trying to train dogs to detect some individualized tiger scents to assist with the estimation of wild tiger populations.
- The scent glands between a tiger's toes leave behind an individualized scent that enables a cub to follow its mother's footsteps.