A baby white tiger being fed by bottle by Ewa (translator/friend) at the suburg zoo in Guangzhou, China.
White tigers are individual specimens of the ordinary orange tiger (Panthera tigris), with a genetic condition that causes paler colouration. White tigers occur whe inbreeding — usually between parents and cubs — produces offspring with two copies of a recessive gene - euw, that I did not know!
Historically, white tigers have been reported in nature in northern China, in the geographic range of the Siberian tiger and in the Indo-Chinese. In more recent centuries they have been recorded in the wild during the Mughal Period (in India) from 1556 - 1605 AD. A painting from 1590 of Akbar hunting tigers near Gwalior depicts 4 tigers, 2 of which appear white. One of the earliest displayed in London in 1820 being described by Rev. J G Woods as "a creamy white, with the ordinary tigerine stripes so faintly marked that they were only visible in certain lights"