Hypothetical scenario: Imagine for a second that you stumbled upon an adult Siberia tiger in the wild. Would you a) run as fast as humanly possible in the other direction, b) curl up in a ball and cry, or c) record the encounter with the four-legged killing machine on your cellphone?
If you just said “a,” then you should appreciate the video above. During a routine patrol of the Chinese/Russian border near the city of Hunchun on Wednesday, Chinese frontier soldiers came across the endangered big cat, and thanks to one particularly daring soldier, captured part of the run-in on video.
“I took out my cellphone after I saw the tiger and I started to video it. But unfortunately I couldn’t record more as the phone was out of power,” said Dong Liwei, the company commander and amateur videographer. “The tiger stared at us for around one minute and then walked into the forest.”
Analysis of the cat’s footprints confirmed that it was indeed a full-grown, female Siberian tiger (also known as the Northeast China tiger), and was moving south. The Siberian tiger is the largest cat in the world, and is endangered, with National Geographic estimating that there are only 400 to 500 living in the wild today.