How Do Tigers Communicate?

tigers-communicate Credit: Steve Wilson/Flickr/CC-BY-2.0

Tigers communicate using vocal sounds, body language and marking on trees. Although they live fairly solitary lives, they do get together occasionally, and it is during these interactions that they communicate with one another.

Tigers have evolved to be able to communicate with each other very effectively. Communication helps to warn of predators or other danger, establish territory and form social bonds.

One of the ways tigers communicate is by scent. Males and females, and mother lions and cubs often rub their faces together as a way of transferring their scent to each other. Male tigers often leave their scent by urinating on objects, such as trees, which marks their territory.

Another form of communication is vocal communication. Mother tigers call their young by using soft moans to summon them. The groan is a non-threatening form of communication. When a tiger roars, it may be used as a sign of danger or as a warning to other tigers to back off.

Like all cats, tigers are masters at visual communication. They use different forms of body language to communicate different emotions. For example, a defensive posture is one where a tiger will lay its ears flat and bares its teeth. A relaxed tiger will have its ears and tail in an upright position.