Bengal Tiger Habitat

Ranthambore National Park - India

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Ranthambore National Park – India

Ranthambore National Park - India Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, part of the Nilgiri district (India) showing the Bengal tiger habitat - Photo by tdietmut Pench National Reserve, India, Photo Ben Robinson (Flickr) Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, Kerala, India - Photo by Avinash Menon (Flickr)

This article on the Bengal tiger habitat looks at where it is and what it is. When you write about habitat you have to write about the location as well. The four photographs above (just click on them to enlarge them) show you the Bengal tiger habitat in reserves in India, the most typical of habitats for this species of tiger.

I also discuss the wildlife found in this habitat as this is also relevant. When writing about this subject we need to remember that the Bengal tiger’s wild habitat is decimated (much reduced). It isn’t possible to simply point to an area on the map and say that is where the Bengal tiger lives.

In general the Bengal tiger lives in a wide variety of habitats. Sixty percent (60%) of the habitat is “tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests”. Twenty-one percent (21%) of the habitat of the tiger is “temperate and broadleaf mixed forest” and the third most common type is “tropical and subtropical dry broadleaf forest”. They also live in coniferous forest, mangrove forest (Sundarbans – see below), and “tropical grass and shrubland”1. The Bengal tiger also lives in dry thorn forest in north-central India and the tall grass jungles of the northern Himalaya2. The Bengal tiger lives primarily in relatively small reserves in India as well – Indian Bengal Tiger Reserves and see comments below.

Bengal tiger rererve

The tiger has found space away from people in the Himalayas of Bhutan surviving above 4,000 feet – The Tigers of Bhutan. This shows the adaptability of the tiger to different habitats.

bengal tiger map showing north east of IndiaThe name “Bengal” tells us in what region of the world this animal once lived and at one time in relative abundance. In rather crude language the historical and geographical region called, “Bengal”, is at the top right hand corner of India (see map). Another way of describing the region is to say that it is located in the northeast of south Asia but that doesn’t mean much to me. It basically constitutes Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal. The map above shows the area.

Of course the Bengal tiger doesn’t confine itself to countries or states. It knows no boundaries and this big cat is found inBangladesh and India (see the places and populations in India where it is found), and also in Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar (Burma) and Tibet.

The population of the Bengal tiger is perilously low at about 1,400 at April 2009. Of this number about 280 live in Bangladesh most of which are in an area called the Sundarbans (as at 2008). The problem is that this area of the world is highly populated with people squeezing out the tiger. Bangladesh is one of the most highly populated countries in the world. People and tiger are forced uncomfortably and unnaturally together at the tiger’s expense. The Bengal tiger habitat is shared with people including tourists. It is thought that tourists disturb the tiger.

Kaziranga National ParkBecause the natural wild tiger habitat has been drastically eroded by people it has been necessary to find alternative and protected habitats. These are the reserves. Nearly all the Bengal tigers are now in reserves or parks (src: Indian Tiger). Two such tiger reserves are the Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan, India and the Sariska Tiger Reserve. Another reserve for the Bengal tiger is the Kaziranga National Park in Assam, which is in north east India. There were around 30 Bengal Tigers in the Kaziranga National Park 1972 and 86 in the 2000 census (src: Wikipedia). There are meant to be 37 Bengal tiger reserves 6 of which are in Nepal and Bangladesh. Many are small – too small it is said. We hear what I would consider depressing stories about reserve tigers such as poisoning tigers in this park, it is claimed that the Kaziranga National Park has a rich supply or prey for the Bengal tiger, which allows it to become larger than normal. It is also claimed that the park has the highest density of tigers in the world at one tiger for each five km² of park area.

So what is it like “on the ground” in say the Sundarbans of Bangladesh, the Kaziranga National Park and the Sariska Tiger Reserve? The picture to the right shows the Kaziranga National Park, lush and green.

The Sariska Tiger Reserve covers 866 km² and is situated 107 km from Jaipur and 200 km from Delhi. Here is a map of the prominent Indian Bengal Tiger Reserves if you click on the blue flags you can see more information and a picture of Bengal tiger habitat – also you can move the map around: left click and hold on the map and move mouse to move the map:

And this link takes you to a lot more about these reserves: Indian Bengal Tiger Reserves.

Here is a Flickr photograph by by TusharKumar of the Sariska Tiger Reserve. He says:

“Sambars are primarily browsers in Sariska Reserve, feed mainly on coarse vegetation, grass, and herbs and of course favourite of tiger.”

Sariska Reserve, India
And what of the Sunderbans in Bangladesh where the tiger lives cheek-by-jowl with people? It is an area where there are dense mangrove forests and where the land meets the sea. Bengal tigers in this region have adapted to the dense forest and the sea water. Tigers are good swimmers anyway. In the Sunderbans (a national park) the primary prey for the tiger is the chital (axis deer), wild boar, and monkeys. Here is a picture by by YamezA (a Flickr photographer) of the Sunderbans to get a feel for the area. There are two deer in the photo, potential prey for the Bengal tiger.

Sunderbans, Bangladesh

Sunderbans mapI have taken the great liberty of reproducing the above map from the Sunderbans National Park website but have given a link to the site in return. If that is a problem please tell me and I will take prompt action.

Bengal Tiger Habitat – Notes:

1. Quotes from IUCN Red List

2. Wild Cats Of The World by the Sunquists page 346.

Bengal Tiger Habitat — Sources:

  • Wikipedia
  • Flickr
  • www.sunderbansnationalpark

Bengal Tiger Habitat — Photos except header are published under a Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs creative commons License — this site is for charitable purposes in funding cat rescue.

Header photo published under Wikimedia® creative commons license license = Attribution-ShareAlike License. Author: THerrington

Michael Avatar

Bengal Tiger Habitat to Wildcat Species

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Bengal Tiger Habitat

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Aug 18, 2011Quick Reference Notes
by: Michael

Here are some quick reference notes on the Bengal tiger habitat:

1. The Bengal tiger lives in a great variety of habitats.

2. “Habitat” means “The natural home or environment of an animal.”

3. The habitat and the location of the habitat are part of the same subject and therefore should be discussed together.

4. In Bangladesh the Bengal tiger lives in mangrove swamps in the Sundarbans. This is at sea level. The tiger adapts to living near sea water as well. The tiger can swim long distances in sea water.

5. In Bhutan it lives at 4,000 feet above sea level. The Bengal tiger lives higher than previously thought. It will live in snow. Here is a picture of rural Bhutan:

Rivers of Bhutan 3

6. In north-central India the Bengal tiger habitat is dry thorn forests.

7. The Bengal tiger also lives in reserves in India. There are many reserves. Here is a picture of the Bhadra Tiger Reserve:

Tigers and Gaurs


Aug 18, 2011Is the relationship between the tiger and its environment beneficial or harmful?
by: Michael

This is a question posed below in a comment. The answer depends on whether it is beneficial to people or the cat or both!

I presume the question means beneficial to us. And the answer has to be, it is beneficial.

The tiger needs a large area in which to live. It has a large home range. If we allowed the tiger the space it required and in sufficient numbers the human population growth levels would have to fall and stabilise.

With a lower human population and greater efficiencies in business and with a greater emphasis on quality of life rather than economic growth people would enjoy a better lifestyle.

Living successfully side by side with the tiger but not interfering with it would be a sign of success for humans. We need to learn to live with our fellow creatures on this planet.

What you you think if we made the tiger extinct in the wild? Do you think it would be detrimental to us? I think it would. There is your answer.

The tiger does no harm to the environment. It lives in harmony with the environment. It is people who destroy the environment and who cannot live in harmony with nature.

One last point. The tiger is the top predator. If we preserve the tiger we help preserve the whole ecosystem, the animals that the tiger preys upon.

May 17, 2011hi
by: lilly

you are awesome!

May 12, 2011Not enough info
by: Anonymous


May 11, 2011Wow.
by: Only Intellegent Anon.

First of all, who ever made this web-page, thank you for trying. It was a little confusing and lacked some information, but the people commenting on this are absolute imbeciles. To the one who said your head hurt, get into 7th grade, learn how to read and then come back and I’ll see if we can talk. Absolutely none of you can spell or as it seems, process thoughts, and your dissing on someone else for not having enough info? Go find the info yourself, and think before you say something idiotic. Seriously, if you can’t type simple words like, “half”, you have no right whatsoever to be telling anyone else that what they’re doing wrong. Good day to you all.

Apr 21, 2011Not enough imfo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
by: Jill

I’m doing a project on the Bengal Tiger and there is not enough imformation to give to my teacher.

Get More Information!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mar 19, 2011boring
by: bridgett

this is not enough information this website sucks 🙁

Mar 13, 2011NOT ENOUGH
by: Kamilah Freakingg M.

There is not enough info to answer a question i have for my project my question is how is the relationship between your animal and its environment beneficial or harmful

Nov 29, 2010What?!?!?!?!?!
by: Jake G

i got lost hlf way through and now my head hurts thant was a lot of words that made no sense to me sorry but im not kidding.

Nov 25, 2010Response
by: Michael

In response to the two comments about there not being enough on the habitat, I have added a bit more.

Also please look at the videos. You can see video of the Bengal tiger habitat by clicking on the blue flag markets on the map of the tiger reserves in India.

I think you may have missed this. They show the habitat. Pictures are better that words in this instance I feel.Michael Avatar

Nov 25, 2010Saving the tigers
by: Ashley (USA)

I came on this site when I searched Google & I just love it, I absolutely adore all cats [wild or tame]. My favorite big cat is the tiger though, for it’s known for its fierceness & beautiful fur. I know that there are only a few 100 or more in the wild & would love to save them. I believe that man should stop taking & destroying all the land that they don’t use & keep it for the tigers, plus even if we grow crops or houses on it things get polluted or just abandoned. I also think we should try not to pollute so much [or at all] so we don’t poison drinking water or food sources that the animals eat, for the pollution may spread into the tiger as well from eating the animal. I hope this was a good idea & I wish to see the beautiful tigers in the wild more populated, it is not a wonderful world without them to bestow their grace.

Nov 06, 2010hi
by: claire

this website was nota as good as i expected it to be. there is not enough imformation about what type of place they live in

e.g. rainforest….

Oct 26, 2010bbbbbboooooooooo
by: Anonymous

this article sucks. i don’t know any information about its habitat.

Response: You are being very unkind as all the information you need is here. I guess you wanted something more straightforward but that does not exist….Michael

Oct 24, 2010The Tigers of Bhutan
by: Michael

I have built a page recently about the tigers of Bhutan. They occupy the highest range above sea level of any tiger at over 4,000 feet!

They seem to have retreated to this remote region on the foothills of the Himalayas to escape people who persecute them.

Read more here:

The Tigers of BhutanMichael Avatar

2 thoughts on “Bengal Tiger Habitat”

    • Thanks for that anonymous. I’ll add some more but the info comes from the best sources about wild cats and there is no much more to say. That said, I’ll take on board what you have said. Thanks for visiting.


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