Shy tigers hate cameras

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The Sumatran tiger -- one of the rarest big cats in the world -- is also perhaps the world's most camera-shy. The protected national parks on the island of Sumatra where they live are lousy with heat-sensitive surveillance cameras, which have become necessary thanks to the efforts of criminal loggers and poachers. (They operate with relative impugnity despite the parks' "protected" status, and between 1998-2000, as many as 66 tigers were poached -- that's about 20% of the total population.)

The tigers, however, don't take kindly to being spied on. At first, representatives from the World Wildlife Foundation thought that poachers and loggers were responsible for the cameras' destruction; only recently have they discovered that the flashbulbs tend to frighten and anger the tigers. (Maybe its all that pent-up rage at being endangered?)

Check out these pics of tigers going Sean Penn crazy -- after the jump.

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December 14, 2006 - 4:01am
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