“LARGEST CATS IN THE WORLD”
As majestic as it is grand, the Liger is the biggest cat in the world with the largest extant Liger living at Myrtle Beach Safari in South Carolina. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, “Hercules” is the largest member of his species, and the living cat world, weighing 922 pounds and 10.8 feet long.
The Liger large size is a result of a genetic abnormality known as “growth dysplasia” which is common in hybrids. In short, this condition is caused in hybrids due to absence or abundance of genes that limit or inhibit growth. The large Liger growth is a result of its parents (Mother Tiger and Father Lion) not possessing the limiting growth gene. This limiting growth gene is found in male TIgers and female lions which is why most researchers believe Tigons are on average smaller than their parents exhibiting negative growth dysplasia.