The farmer and Shaanxi officials involved in the tiger photo may be ruing the day they went public with the images.

Now, seems the tiger in the shot’s a dead ringer for a tiger that appeared on a poster. From Reuters:

Chinese Internet users have pointed to a Chinese New Year poster as proof that a controversial photograph of a tiger purportedly snapped in the wild is fake, local media reported on Monday.

The emergence online of a commemorative Chinese New Year’s poster of a tiger reclining on a rock produced in 2002 has been cited as proof that Zhou faked the image.

The poster’s manufacturer was quoted by local media reports as saying that the tiger’s “stripes, bearing and motion are exactly the same as the New Year’s poster.”

Luo Guanglin, general manager of Yiwushi Vista Print Packing Co Ltd, told Reuters by telephone that the tiger on the poster his company produced was “very similar” to Luo’s.

“I can’t say whether Zhou’s tiger is the same. That’s for experts to decide… But it is very similar, over 90 percent similar,” Luo said.

While the tigers are placed in different settings — Zhou’s in a forest, and Vista’s on a rock in a gushing stream — the stripes and pose of the tiger look similar to the naked eye.

Poster heats up China “paper” tiger debate

Xinhua also carried the story, in report headed:
Farmer returns to wilderness to prove tiger photo genuine
– might reckon farmer Zhou will be best advised to stay in the wilderness, at least till he photographs a real tiger or the furor dies down! 😆