One of the best Tigers ever, if we had our say. Which we have, now. The Northrop F-5A/B Freedom Fighter served within the RNoAF 1966 to 2000. Norway bought 78 single-seaters (A), 14 two-seaters (B) and 16 RF-5A tactical reconnaissance jets (Image © Elmer van Hest)

Tigerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!

Tiger, tiger! Dutch 313 squadron turns sixty. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Tiger, tiger! Dutch 313 squadron turns sixty. (Image © Elmer van Hest)

FLASHBACK | Since Dutch 313 ‘Tiger’ squadron turned sixty in 2013 – when we originally posted this feature – and since we at Airheadsfly.com like cats and pussies in all shapes and sizes, let’s have a gathering of well known and lesser known Tigers of the past decades. Aircraft adorned with tigers – and as Tigers – have always been well received by aviation geeks and pros. And in case you didn’t know already: epicenter of the Tigermeet 2015 is Konya AB in Turkey, after Schleswig Jagel airbase in northern Germany served the tigers in 2014.

Perhaps the greatest Starfighter ever, wearing a special Tiger outfit. Unfortunately, it was also the last Starfighter to ever fly with Italy’s 21 Gruppo. But you probably figured that one out yourselves already. The squadron went on to fly the Panavia Tornado F3 and from there it moved onto Bell Agusta AB-212 helicopters. We won’t mention that ever again. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Perhaps the greatest Starfighter ever, wearing a special Tiger outfit. Unfortunately, it was also the last Starfighter to ever fly with Italy’s 21 Gruppo – but you probably figured that one out yourselves already. The squadron went on to fly the Panavia Tornado F3 and from there it moved onto Bell Agusta AB-212 helicopters. We won’t mention that ever again. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
The French Etendards have a thing for Tigers. By their standards, these are rather boring tiger markings. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
The French Super Etendards have a thing for Tigers. By their standards, these are rather boring tiger markings. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Not often seen are tiger markings on USAF aircraft. This 79th FS F-16C from Shaw Air Force Base was a welcome exception in 1997. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Not often seen are tiger markings on USAF aircraft. This 79th FS F-16C from Shaw Air Force Base was a welcome exception in 1997…. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
.... as was this KC-135E from 141st ARS, New Jersey ANG. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
…. as was this KC-135E from 141st ARS, New Jersey ANG. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Lakenheath F-111s once were prominent members of the tiger family. Less so for the F-15Es, although this one does look nice. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Lakenheath F-111s once were prominent members of the tiger family. Less so for the F-15Es, although this one does look nice. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Everybody knows the Belgians. No words needed. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Everybody knows the Belgians of 31 Smaldeel. No words needed. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
But who remembers this Slovak MiG-29, seen here in 2002? (Image © Elmer van Hest)
But who remembers this Slovak MiG-29 from 1SLK at Sliač, seen here in 2002? The aircraft crashed several months after this picture was taken. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Great Gripen! After the fall of the iron curtain, eastern European air forces started to appear at Tigermeets. The Czech Air Force is now a faithful participant. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
Great Gripen! After the fall of the iron curtain, eastern European air forces started to appear at Tigermeets. The Czech Air Force is now a faithfull participant. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
Who would have thought some two decades ago; a Polish Tigermeet participant flying Lockheed Martin F-16s. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
Who would have thought some two decades ago; a Polish Tigermeet participant flying Lockheed Martin F-16s. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
French unit EC05.330 is hard beat when it comes to tiger colours. The markings on this Mirage F1B are quite simple, but effective. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
French unit EC05.330 is hard to beat when it comes to tiger colours. The markings on this Mirage F1B are quite simple, but effective. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Helos also do tigers, as seen on this Royal Nacy Sea King
Helos also do tigers, as seen on this Royal Nacy Sea King HAS6 of 814 squadron. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
More tiger spirit in the shape of a Royal Air Force Merlin. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
More tiger spirit in the shape of a Royal Air Force Merlin. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
Over the last ten years or so, the Swiss started attending Tigermeets regularly. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
Over the last ten years or so, the Swiss started attending Tigermeets regularly. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
The French airbase of Cambrai hosted the Tigermeet more than once. This very colourful Mirage 2000C was based at this now-closed airbase. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
The French airbase of Cambrai hosted the Tigermeet more than once. This very colourful Mirage 2000C was based at this now-closed airbase. (Image © Dennis Spronk)
One of the best Tigers ever, if we had our say. Which we have, now. (Image © Elmer van Hest)
One of the best Tigers ever, if we had our say. Which we actually had, just now. (Image © Elmer van Hest)

© 2013 AIRheads’ editors Elmer van Hest & Dennis Spronk