The liger isn’t an animal hybrid that you see everyday, but the tiny liliger cub you see above may be the only one in existence. It’s the offspring of a liger (bottom) mother and lion father. Continue reading to see five more cool animal hybrids.
5. Wholphin (False Killer Whale + Dolphin)
A cross between a false killer whale and an Atlantic bottlenose dolphin, wholphins are hybrids that have been reported to exist in the wild. There are currently two in captivity, both at Sea Life Park in Hawaii. The wholphin’s size, color and shape are intermediate between the parent species. Even their number of teeth is mixed; a bottlenose has 88 teeth, a false killer whale has 44 teeth, and a wholphin has 66.
4. Grolar Bear (Grizzly Bear + Polar Bear)
The offspring of a grizzly bear and a polar bear, a grolar bear is one beast you don’t want to meet in the woods. Interestingly, unlike many hybrid animals on this list, grolar bears are known to occur naturally in the wild. Some experts predict that polar bears may be driven to breed with grizzly bears at an increased frequency due to global warming, and the fact that polar bears are being forced from their natural habitats on the polar ice.
3. Jaglion (Jaguar + Lion)
A jaglion or jaguon is the offspring between a male jaguar and a female lion (lioness). A mounted specimen is on display at the Walter Rothschild Zoological Museum, Hertfordshire, England. It has the lion’s background color, brown, jaguar-like rosettes and the powerful build of the jaguar. On April 9, 2006, two jaglions were born at Bear Creek Wildlife Sanctuary, Barrie (north of Toronto), Ontario, Canada. Jahzara (female) and Tsunami (male) were the result of an unintended mating between a black jaguar called Diablo and a lioness called Lola, which had been hand-raised together and were inseparable.
2. Zorse (Zebra + Horse)
There are many different animals that would fall under the Zebroid group, including the Zorse (Zebra and a horse), Zonkey (zebra and donkey) and the zoni (zebra and pony). These remarkable animals usually have the build of the female animal, and the stripes of the male zebra, although the stripes never cover their whole bodies, and is usually limited to the feet and legs, or can be found in patches over the animals body.
1. Liliger (Liger + Tiger)
You may have heard of a liger�the lion-tiger hybrid is, after all, Napoleon Dynamite’s favorite animal – but now a Russian zoo has released photos of a so-called “liliger” named Kiara, the offspring of a liger mother and a lion father. Ligers are the result of a male lion mating with a female tiger. Craig Packer, director of the Lion Research Center at the University of Minnesota, said he hasn’t heard of a liliger before but is “not surprised” that it exists.
All ligers are born in captivity, Packer said, because this animal simply does not exist in the natural world. Not only are wild lion and tiger populations separated by geography, there are certain behavior mechanisms in place that would prevent the two species from mating.
Honorable Mention – Liger (Lion + Tiger)
The Liger is a hybrid cross between a male lion and a female tiger, thus both its parents are from the Panthera genus, but from different species. Ligers are the biggest of all the big cats, growing to almost the lion and tigers combined size. They carry characteristics from both parents, for instance their love of swimming from tigers and their highly social behavior from lions. Nowadays, Ligers can only be found in captivity as their territories don’t overlap, but in history there have been stories of ligers found in the wild.