HomeWild Cat SpeciesTigerReduce the Number of Subspecies of Tiger To Protect It

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Reduce the Number of Subspecies of Tiger To Protect It — 3 Comments

  1. My friend Doris Lin who an animal rights attorney and has her own website had this to say…

    Doris Lin First, no, species and subspecies classification are not arbitrary. Species are defined as to whether individuals can reproduce and produce fertile offspring.

    “If the difference between, for example, a Sumatran tiger and a South China tiger is less, at a genetic level, than the difference between a person from Ireland and a person from India, should they be classified as different subspecies?”

    You can’t compare tigers to humans. Subspecies are groups of individuals who are geographically separated from the rest of the breeding population of their species. There are no human subspecies because people can travel and geography is not a problem.

    From an animal rights viewpoint, we can’t sacrifice individuals (who are sentient and have feelings and therefore have rights) to save a species (which is not an entity with feelings, and therefore has no rights). If moving tigers from an unsafe habitat to a better habitat would benefit the individual being moved, then it’s ok to move them. But if we’re moving them around just to breed them, I’m opposed to that.

    Her website
    http://animalrights.about.com/bio/Doris-Lin-42302.htm

    • Thanks Irish for those insights. And thanks as well to Doris Lin. That is not to say I don’t altogether agree with them 😉 . For instance geographical separation alone is not enough to classify a group as a subspecies. Most of the Bengal tigers are separated out in different groups but they are all one species. And the genetic differences between some subspecies are too small to justify classifying them as a different subspecies.

      The point is that scientists have inflated the number of subspecies in the same way that medical researchers/doctors have inflated the number of human illnesses (one being attention deficit disorder) . Many of the subspecies were designated many years ago. We know better now. It a natural form of human behavior.

      But the this whole area is debatable.

  2. I love the picture of the tiger with her 3 babies!

    Since I don’t know anything about Florida panthers, I looked them up on Defenders of Wildlife. There’s a lot of interesting facts, including this: “While the Florida panther is large, it is more closely related to small cats — like lynx and housecats — than to other big cats — like lions and tigers”.

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