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The Tigon is a hybrid cross between a male tiger and a female lion. Thus, it has parents with the same genus but of different species. The tigon is not currently as common as the converse hybrid, the liger, which is the offspring of a male lion and a female tiger; however, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, wrote that he had been able to obtain three tigons, but he had never seen a liger. The tigon's genome includes genetic components of both parents. Tigons can exhibit visible characteristics from both parents: they can have both spots from their lion mother (lions carry genes for spots—lion cubs are spotted and some adults retain faint markings) and stripes from their tiger father. Any mane that a male tigon may have will appear shorter and less noticeable than a lion's mane and is closer in type to the ruff of a male tiger. It is a common misconception that tigons are smaller than lions or tigers. Unlike ligers, they do not exceed the size of their parent species because they inherit growth-inhibitory genes from the lioness mother, but they do not exhibit any kind of dwarfism or miniaturization; they often weigh around 180 kilograms (400 lb).

This cross-breeding (between a tiger and a lioness) can cause difficulties during pregnancy because a tiger is a bigger cat than a lion.

As with the liger, the females are fertile and the males are sterile. When the females are mated with a lion or tiger, they produce litigons and titigons.

See also[edit]


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