The hunter had no option but to keep plucking leaves from the tree on which he had sought refuge as the tiger waited below for him. The leaves were of the bilva tree which is dear to Lord Shiva. The hunter did not know that there was a Shiva linga below the tree and the leaves of the bilva tree kept falling on the linga through the night. Lord Shiva was pleased with the offering.
The hunter had been a devotee of Lord Shiva for several births and he had accumulated enough karma to attain moksha but Shiva's grace was all that had remained for him. The incident with the tiger was thus a leela. When the first rays of the sun fell, the tiger had disappeared and in his place stood Lord Shiva who blessed the hunter and granted him release from the cycle of birth and death.
May the ever compassionate Lord Shiva whose grace ensures happiness in this world and moksha in the hereafter bless all his devotees with the supreme wealth of vairagya! Om Namah Shivay!
Watch a beautiful Bharatanatyam dance recital to the rendition of the chant Bho Shambho on this link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfiGIxKBmVY