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South-China tiger by Peter Jackson
Habitat: Montane sub-tropical evergreen forest.
Description: Smaller than the royal Bengal tiger. Males weigh between 130 and 180 kg., while females weigh between 100 and 120 kg.
Population: The population of the South China tiger was estimated at approximately 50 mature individuals in 1996 (Nowell and Jackson, 1996). However, it is possible that the South China tiger is nearly extinct as there have been no confirmed sightings in recent times.
Status: The most critically endangered of all tiger subspecies. In 1977, the Chinese government banned the killing of wild tigers, but it was probably too late to save the subspecies. There are breeding efforts to reintroduce these tigers in the wild, but because all the captive South China tigers are said to be descended from only six individuals, for genetic reasons, hopes aren’t high that the reintroduction will be successful.