now read on....
Out of place tigers have been reported wild in the United States from time to time. In the 19th Century there was possibly a population of them in the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia. They were reported to be identical with Asiatic tigers. Around 1840 a Mr James shot one there. A doughty woman with a hoe when faced by one cut off its paw. This specimen was later killed. Another one was killed subsequently. Where these animals came from and whether there are any of their species left there are mysteries.
These are not the only American reports of tigers on the loose. In 1767 J. Carver reported seeing a "tiger of America". Just what he meant by that one cannot say with certainty. In 1823 a tiger was reported from Russelville (Kentucky). A large striped cat was reported from Kentucky in the 1970s. A big cat with brown stripes was reported from Marlington (West Virginia) in 1977. Animals showing tigrine characteristics were reported from Pennsylvania in 1986 and Ohio in 1994.
What we are to make of all these reports I cannot say. Perhaps there are some populations descended from escapees or even an unknown American species of American felid awaiting discovery.
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