An Extraordinary Leap by a Tiger

The tiger has extraordinary athleticism and courage. Here is a verbatim account from a tiger hunt that took place in and around the 1850s. In those days shooting at tigers was commonplace. It makes me admire the tiger hugely but detest the human in equal measure.

"Lieutenant Rice relates an anecdote of an extraordinary leap made by a tigress. He happened to be near the city Bhampoora, and was preparing to examine a large ravine in the vicinity, when word was brought back that a tigress had been seen creeping out of a thick patch of cover that had already been beaten. The beast had cunningly remained hidden in spite of the noise made by the men; and, thinking the danger was over, was attempting to sneak off unobserved to some distant jungle, when she was espied by a man who had been stationed near the spot as a look-out. Lieutenant Rice and his companion took up their position on the slope of a hill, and sent the sent the beaters round the opposite side for the purpose of driving out the game. Presently the animal came bounding along at a tearing pace. At a distance of seventy yards she received a couple of shots, but, seemingly uninjured, continued her rapid course for about a hundred yards further, when she suddenly made a tremendous spring in the air, clearing a small tree in her path seven feet high, and fell dead on the other side. The leap, according to measurement, was over eight yards, and blood was found on the topmost boughs of the tree. She seemed to drop dead in the air. She was very old and had one tusk broken. When her skin was removed some small pieces of lead were discovered beneath it. The experience of these wounds had taught her to behave so cunningly."

Clearly humankind is more cunning and more cruel.

Reference: Harper's new monthly magazine, Volume 16 edited by Henry Mills Alden. In the public domain.

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