The Cub That Grew Too Big

Steve Winter's Image

A six-month-old cross between a tiger and a lion, Gir was rescued by Tiger Haven, Tennessee, upon becoming too big for petting.

Some venues breed tigers with lions as a novelty, despite the two not breeding in the wild. Gir’s poor condition was due to both inadequate nutrition and health problems associated with hybridisation, which can include deformities, eye and brain functionality issues, and organ failure.


Behind the lens

Steve Winter

Steve became a National Geographic photojournalist in 1991 and specialises in photographing big cats. He lectures on photography and conservation issues, selling out venues from the Sydney Opera House in Australia to the Roy Thompson Hall in Toronto, Canada. He won the grand prize for Wildlife Photographer of the Year in 2008.

Image details

  • Canon EOS 5D Mark IV
  • 24–105mm f4 lens
  • 0.25 sec at f9.5  •   ISO 400
Copyright in WPY competition photographs remains the property of the respective photographers. You may not copy, share, reproduce or republish the photographs except as expressly permitted by copyright law. For media image usage enquiries, please contact us.

More images from Steve Winter

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Hollywood cougar
Saved but caged
Sacrifice

Wonder wall


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