Originally posted 2010-04-28 08:00:59. Republished by Blog Post Promoter
Hello All. Today I am going to write again about cantankerousity. I have good reason to believe that the most cantankerous animal will be revealed here.
Now, I can make a good case for Ralph, he is bringing us cantankerousness and leading the charge here at Cantakerous Old Coots. He only gets an honorable mention today though.
I have been reading a book that was written in the early part of the 20th century by a British Soldier who lived most of his life in India. The man is Jim Corbett and the book is called the Maneaters of Kumaon. This book is about the authors treks through the wilds of India in search of todays most cantakerous animal, the man-eating tiger.
While this book sound like Great White Hunter vs lowly animal, it is not, in fact Corbett was a conservationist who would not shoot a tiger that was not proven to be a man eater. One of the largest tiger preserves in the world is in India and named for him. This book is a great adventure story and reading it I keep hearing the voice of my Great Grandfather recounting his stories. Check this book out, it is good.
Now onto the Cantankerousness… Tigers are huge, powerful animals. They are designed to be one of the ultimate predators. Zoo tigers cannot compare to the yarns spun out by Corbett about the intelligence and cunning of the tiger.
Further research shows that they are, or were depending on populations, the apex predator in several of the jungle regions of Asia. Leopards are close. Tigers are just magnificent. Now I am going to get comments (hopefully) about lions, crocodiles and sharks being the most cantankerous. Maybe they are in their spheres, but in a fair fight, (impossible for sharks) I would put money on the tiger.
Their intelligence is obvious from the fact that they can be trained for the circus and other acts. Their cantakerosity is obvious, just ask Sigfreid and Roy. I think they will be your friend until they are hungry. Then you are just meat.
Which is what the book is about. The tigers in this book were hunted and shot by Corbett on behalf of the Indian (dot not feather) Government. All of these tigers were Man-Eaters. And, just as an aside, most of them were female….Many similarities to human females…but that is another post.
Between 1907 and 1938 Corbett hunted and killed 19 tigers and 14 leopards, all proven to be Man-Eaters. All together these cats were responsible for the deaths of more than 1200 people. One tiger, by itself was responsible for 436 documented deaths. Who knows how many it killed that were not documented.
These tigers were later proven to have physical problems that prevented them from hunting other prey and so they turned to something easier, people. Many of these tigers had broken teeth or claws, old gunshot wounds that healed badly, and a good many had deeply embedded and infected porcupine quills that kept them from being natural hunters.
Tigers are smart as I have said before. They know how to stalk within feet of people without being seen. They attack quickly, and they are strong enough to drag away their prey quickly. They hold grudges. They remember people and situations. They don’t give much of a crap if you yell or wave your arms.
I have learned much about tigers and their inherent cantankerousness. Something to strive for when pursuing Cootness. Heck my Chinese zodiac sign is the tiger, most of those say beware of the monkey, I say the monkey better watch his ass.
What are some of the most cantankerous animals you can think of? I would love to know.