Heartwarming moment shows a hungry tiger cub giving its mother a hug after she misses out on killing a deer

This is the incredible moment a tiger cub consoled its mother after she missed out on a kill.

The tigress spotted deer at the Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve in Maharashtra, India, and managed to creep up to the herd while remaining unseen. But just as she was about to strike an alert deer spotted her and the group fled, leaving her hungry.

Amazingly, when the tigress named Maya returned to her cubs, one of her little ones opted to console her with a huge hug.

Wildlife photographer Amol Bais, 34, captured the moving moment on camera and was amazed when it quickly went viral - notching up almost 2.5 million likes and more than 25,000 shares online.

Amol, from Chandrapur, India, said: 'Maya was disappointed but when one of the cubs came down to the road and hugged her mum just in front of our jeep, it was a very touchy moment. As I was watching from my camera, it was unforgettable for me.

'I have been a wildlife photographer for five years but I have never seen such an adorable moment in my life. As soon as I posted the photo online, I received lots of wishes and appreciation across the world.'

The cute photograph may have been a huge hit online, but Amol insists that there is a an important message behind it.

Amol said: 'As a conservationist, I am working for tribal development and spreading awareness among the tribal people living inside and on the peripheral areas of tiger reserves and near wildlife sanctuaries in India.

'Spreading awareness among the tribes about wildlife and educating them through photographs helps to save the natural heritage of nature. With the tiger being the apex of the food chain, it has to be saved on any cost.'