How Are Lions and Tigers Different?

There are many differences between lions and tigers, including coat differences and different habitats. Lions and tigers are also different sizes, and raise their young differently.

One of the most obvious differences between lions and tigers is their coats. A lion is tan, with a long dark mane. A tiger is orange with brown or black stripes across its body. Tigers tend to be larger than lions, and a full-grown male tiger can outweigh a lion by as much as 100 pounds. On average, lions can run up to 20 mph faster than tigers.

There are also differences in how the animals raise their young. A lioness typically has one or two cubs in a litter, while a tigress has two to four. Their gestation period is very similar, ranging from 100 to 110 days, yet a tigress nurses her young up to 24 months, while a lioness only nurses for 10 to 12 months.

Lions are native to Africa and India. Tigers live in southeastern and eastern Asia. Lions are considered vulnerable through the Endangered Species Act, meaning if their numbers fall, they may become threatened. Tigers, on the other hand, are already endangered, and it is believed there are only 3,000 to 4,000 left in their native habitat. Most live in captivity in zoos and animal sanctuaries.