The Royal Bengal tiger is solitary and “secretive”—the last attribute regularly appears in the language of even the most sober field manuals. A group of tigers—should one be so fortunate to see one—is called a streak. A male tiger can be as large as ten and a half feet in length and weigh more than five hundred pounds. The tiger’s coat is deep amber, the lines of its characteristic black shadow-stripes abstract and sophisticated. Its claws retract, like those of a domestic cat; it “prusts,” or chuffs, rather than purrs, as well as roars. The iris of the tiger’s eye is amber-yellow. The tiger is one of the few anointed animals commonly referred to as “charismatic”; “Nature’s masterpiece of the creation,” to cite a recent book; or, as Kushal put it, “something to look up to,” both beautiful and powerful ...Carolyn Alexander, 'Tigerland', The New Yorker, April 21, 2008.
(I would like to heard a tiger chuff ... from a distance.)