Tuesday, 29 March 2011

More footprints in the Forest...

A recent census suggests that tiger populations in India are bouncing back: the 2007 count registered around 1400 cats, a figure which has risen to over 1700 this year.

Conducting their study across 17 Indian states, experts used hidden cameras and DNA testing to collect one of the most accurate counts to date - the 2007 census was largely collected by counting 'pugmarks' and taking individual sightings during tiger watching surveys.

Despite the obvious excitement, Jairam Ramesh, India's Environment Minister,and Rajesh Gopal, director of the National Tiger Conservation Authority, agree that we still have a long way to go towards conserving India's cats and, ultimately, saving them from extinction, with the destruction of wildlife corridors (natural pathways between reserves) one of the most pressing issues.

To put the current census into a long-term perspective, whilst we have gained 300 tigers in this year's census, we have lost more than 98000 over the past century.

Related posts by Lucy Grewcock:
Broken Tail: A pioneer for tiger conservation
Fierce Roars over Tiger Tourism
Tiger Penis and Shark Fin Soup

This post was also published on Responsible Travel News
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