Are There Tigers In North Korea?

Are There Tigers In North Korea?

Tigers are some of the most fascinating animals in the world. These cats are the largest members of the big cat family and they are known for their telltale stripes on their fur. Here, we will take a look at if any tigers live in the country of North Korea. 

Are there tigers in North Korea? The Siberian tiger is a species of tiger that can be found in the eastern portions of Russia, northeast China, and in portions of North Korea. Only a small amount of this tiger can be found in North Korea though. These cats are most likely to be found in the North Hamgyong Province of North Korea.

RELATED: Lovely Baby Tiger Facts & Photos + Wallpapers

Siberian Tiger relaxing on snowy Tree Trunk
Siberian Tiger relaxing on snowy Tree Trunk

At one point, this majestic tiger had a larger range and was found throughout both North and South Korea, China, and Mongolia. Today, only about 500 of these tigers are left in the wild due to deforestation and illegal hunting. In this province, tigers can live in broadleaf and pine forests, where they hunt on boar and deer. This ecosystem can only support a small number of Siberian tigers. 

These tigers are also called “Amur tigers” and they are known as a national animal of Korea. Even though there are not a lot of tigers left in North Korea that makes them all the more popular for Koreans. The tiger is seen as a symbol of national pride and is seen as playful and cuddly to the country’s natives.  

RELATED: Do People Eat Tigers?

Do any other species of tiger live in North Korea? 

Try our Tiger Species Quiz

Did you know that there are six living subspecies of tigers? We already know that the Siberian tiger can be found in North Korea, but can any of the other types of tigers live in North Korea? Today, the only type of tiger that can be found in North Korea is the Siberian tiger. While the other five types of tigers do not live in North Korea, they do all live in Asia. These are the countries that the other tigers can be found: 

Bengal tiger – Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, India, and Nepal 

Indo-Chinese tiger – Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam 

Malayan tiger – Burma, Malaysia, Singapore, and Thailand 

South China tiger – China 

Sumatran tiger – the Indonesian island of Sumatra 

Sadly, there are also three subspecies of tigers that are completely extinct. Did any of these tigers live in North Korea when they were alive? None of the three types of extinct tigers were ever native to North Korea. Like the living species of tigers, these tigers were all found in Asia. These are the countries that these tigers used to roam: 

Bali tiger – the Indonesian island of Sumatra (went extinct in the 1950s) 

Caspian tiger – Afghanistan, Iran, Mongolia, Russia, and Turkey (went extinct in the 1970s) 

Javan tiger – the Indonesian island of Java (went extinct in the 1970s) 

How big are Siberian tigers? 

Siberian Tiger
Siberian Tiger

Siberian tigers are the biggest cats in the world! On average, a Siberian tiger is about 11 feet long, with its tail adding an additional 3 feet to its body! Full-grown male Siberian tigers can weigh up to 700 pounds and full-grown females can grow to be about 400 pounds. Additionally, the largest Siberian tiger ever recorded weighed nearly 771 pounds. He was discovered living in Russia’s Far East area in 1934. 

RELATED: Are There Tigers In Japan?

What do Siberian tigers eat? 

Siberian tigers eat mostly large prey such as wild boar and deer subspecies such as sika deer and red deer. They will also eat bear cubs (such as brown bears or Himalayan black bears). In the summer months, these tigers may also prey on smaller mammals like badgers or raccoon dogs. Siberian tigers will also travel a far distance in order to find food. A female Siberian tiger may have a home hunting range of about 12 square miles and male tigers may have a range of about 25 square miles.  

Himalayan black bear cub
Himalayan black bear cub

RELATED: Do Tigers Live In The Jungle?

Why are Siberian tigers so endangered? 

Siberian tigers almost went extinct in the early 20th century when it was estimated that there were only about 20 to 30 of these tigers left in the wild. Today, there are about 500 of these tigers in the wild and 500 more living in captivity. They are endangered because of deforestation (logging leads to a loss of their habitat and then they have to move to smaller areas), a loss of food source (with deforestation, these tigers will sometimes turn to hunting domesticated animals), and illegal poaching (Siberian tiger’s bones, whiskers, and teeth are used in traditional medicine). 

nv-author-image

Adrian Volenik

I've lived around animals my whole life and I hold a Diploma in Animal Physiology. When I'm not reading or writing about wild animals, health and fitness, and technology, you can find me playing with my son and two cats. My pastimes include running, playing video games, and solving the NY Times crossword.