Tiger conservation in Nepal

This video says about itself:

2 February 2015

The World Wide Fund for Nature is calling for an end to all poaching in Asia. The organisation is partnering with the Nepalese government where ‘zero-poaching’ initiatives have already saved the lives of many species, including rhinos, tigers and elephants. Al Jazeera’s Subina Shrestha reports from Kathmandu.

From Wildlife Extra:

Good news for tigers as Nepal extends Parsa Wildlife

The Nepali cabinet has approved the proposed extension of the Parsa Wildlife Reserve, situated in the south-central lowland Terai of Nepal next to Chitwan National Park, by 128 km² to take in Bara forests.

This addition of Bara to the Chitwan-Parsa complex adds up to 2500km² of adjoining protected tiger habitat; and it is possible that with this extension of the Parsa Wildlife Reserve, the total landscape has the potential to support more than 40 adult tigers.

The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) has been working to monitor tigers in the Parsa Wildlife Reserve to better understand how to protect them from threats; and for the past year, and have been advocating the inclusion of the Bara forests to the protected area.

Good tiger news from Bhutan

This is a Siberian tiger video.

From daily The Guardian in Britain:

Bhutan tiger population higher than previously thought, survey reveals

Himalayan country’s first nationwide survey finds 103 tigers, but WWF warns big cat was facing a crisis elsewhere south-east Asia

Wednesday 29 July 2015 10.50 BST

Bhutan is home to more than 100 tigers, a rise of more than a third on the previous population estimate, a survey has revealed.

The first national tiger survey in the tiny Himalayan country, conducted entirely by Bhutanese nationals, has found there are 103 tigers, up from the previous estimate of 75.

But while conservationists welcomed the news from Bhutan’s first nationwide tiger survey, they warned the big cat was facing a crisis in south-east Asia where some countries are failing to assess populations.

Countries need to carry out national surveys as a crucial step in the “Tx2” goal agreed in 2010 by tiger range nations to double numbers of the endangered cat by 2022, wildlife charity WWF said.

Dechen Dorji, WWF Bhutan country representative, said: “The roaring success of Bhutan’s first ever nationwide survey gives us a rare look into the lives of the magnificent tigers roaming across the entire country.

“This is an incredible achievement with great teamwork and leadership from the Royal Government of Bhutan.”

The news, on Global Tiger Day, comes after Bangladesh announced the results from its first national tiger survey which revealed there were 106 wild tigers in the country, a lower figure than the previous estimate.

But WWF said the previous figure was based on less reliable methodology than the new systematic survey which included the use of camera traps, and could have led to overestimates for the number of tigers in Bangladesh.

Experts from Malaysia have suggested that tiger numbers in the country have as much as halved from the previous estimate of 500 in 2010 to as few as 250, and the government has announced its intention to conduct its first national tiger survey.

But tiger numbers are unknown in Indonesia, Thailand and Burma, and there are thought to be no breeding populations in Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos, WWF said.

Mike Baltzer, WWF Tigers Alive initiative leader said: “There is a tiger crisis in south-east Asia.

“Countries are not counting their tigers and are at risk of losing them if immediate action isn’t taken. Political support is weaker and resources are fewer, while poaching and habitat loss are at critical levels.

“Until countries know the reality on the ground they can’t take appropriate action to protect their tigers.

“WWF is calling on all south-east Asian tiger countries to count their tigers and on the global tiger conservation community to focus efforts in these critical south-east Asian countries.”

There has been some good news for tigers across their range, with figures released earlier this year showing an increase in numbers in India, while Amur tigers are on the rise in their Russian Far East home, according to the latest census results.

Nepal’s last survey in 2013 found tiger numbers had increased there and there are indications that tigers are settling and breeding in north eastern China, WWF said.

Sumatran tigers, camera trap video

This video from Indonesia says about itself:

Rare Camera Trap Footage of Sumatran Tigers

Exciting footage of two wild tigers giving signals they are ready to mate captured by WWF’s camera trap in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park, Sumatra.

Read more here.

Amur tiger back in the wild

This video says about itself:

19 June 2015

A three year old Amur tiger has been successfully captured, collared and released into a mountainous region in the Russian Far East. The young male was identified as a ‘conflict tiger’ in a prey depleted area but rather than confining him to a life of captivity, the Russian government opted to give him a second chance. – See more here.

From Wildlife Extra about this:

WWF films tiger being released back to the wild

WWF has filmed an Amur Tiger being released back into the wild after spending time in a wild animal rehabilitation centre in the Russian Far East.

The tiger is a young male called Uporny, who was captured in November 2014 after being identified as a ‘conflict’ tiger.

He had been living in an area where there was a lack of prey and had killed dogs to survive. There were also fears that he could come into conflict with humans in a nearby town.

After undergoing the necessary health checks in a wild animal rehabilitation centre in the Russian Far East, Uporny was released into a sparsely inhabited mountainous area.

Uporny’s new home is an area with a good source of prey. It’s also home to a female Amur tiger, which provides hope that Uporny will not only continue to live wild and free, but also breed – contributing to the recovering tiger population in Russia.

The Russian government Forest Department (Ministry of Natural Resource of Khabarovsky Province) organised and implemented the translocation operation with the help of WWF and the Amur Tiger Center.

“This is a very rare piece of footage, showing the release of a healthy, powerful male tiger back into the wild, where he belongs,” says Rebecca May, Asia Regional Manager at WWF-UK.

“A huge team effort and great expertise was involved, including that of colleagues in WWF Russia. We wish him well in his new home.”

For his release into the wild, the tiger was fitted with a lightweight radio collar. The collar has a special function that allows it to drop off when the tracking team are satisfied with his progress.

Having been flagged as a potential conflict tiger, Uporny will be monitored until he is well established in his new area. For the first month, a team of specialists will be tracking his location and eating habits on a constant basis, using GPS data sent from the collar as well as tracking him on the ground.

Once the collar detaches, he will be monitored using camera traps and the recording of his pugmarks.

Good tiger news from Thailand

This video from India says about itself:

Tiger (Panthera tigris) in water pool during hot dry summer

13 February 2013

The tiger (Panthera tigris) is the largest cat species, reaching a total body length of up to 3.3 metres (11 ft) and weighing up to 306 kg (670 lb). It is the third largest land carnivore (behind only the Polar bear and the Brown bear).

Its most recognizable feature is a pattern of dark vertical stripes on reddish-orange fur with lighter underside. It has exceptionally stout teeth, and the canines are the longest among living felids with a crown height of as much as 74.5 mm (2.93 in) or even 90 mm (3.5 in).

In zoos, tigers have lived for 20 to 26 years, which also seems to be their longevity in the wild. They are territorial and generally solitary but social animals, often requiring large contiguous areas of habitat that support their prey requirements. This, coupled with the fact that they are indigenous to some of the more densely populated places on Earth, has caused significant conflicts with humans.

After bad tiger news from Thailand, some better news.

From Mongabay.com:

Tigers expanding? Conservationists discover big cats in Thai park

Jeremy Hance

June 04, 2015

For the first time conservationists have confirmed Indochinese tigers (Panthera tigris corbetti) in Thailand’s Chaloem Ratanakosin National Park. In January, camera traps used by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and Thailand’s Department of National Parks took a photo of a tigress, confirming what had only been rumors. A couple months later the camera traps photographed a male tiger in the same park.

At 59 square kilometers, Chaloem Ratanakosin National Park is one of the smallest protected areas in the regions. But it is a part of Thailand’s vast and sprawling Western Forest Conservation Complex (WEFCOM), which is covers an area of 18,000 square kilometers—about the size of Fiji. WEFCOM is made up of 11 national parks and six wildlife refuges, and is considered one of the largest forests left in Southeast Asia.

The photos of tigers in Chaloem Ratanakosin National Park may be a sign that the species is expanding its range in the protected area complex.

“It’s great to have real evidence that tigers are found in a greater area of the WEFCOM than previously thought,” said Kittiwara Siripattaranukul, Tiger Project Manager at ZSL, based in Thailand. “Until now, there have only been unconfirmed reports of tigers in the area, but to capture photographs that prove their presence is really encouraging. We hope that the region will become a new territory for tigers.”

The IUCN estimates that there are only 202-352 Indochinese tigers left across possibly five countries: Thailand, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos. Thailand is believed to house the vast majority of these tigers with 185 to 200 individuals. Tigers have long persisted in the northern section of WEFCOM—with a population of 150-plus in Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary—but this is one of the first documentations of the top predators in the south. Experts believe WEFCOM could one day house as many as 2,000 tigers.

According to the Wildlife Conservation Society, WEFCOM is also home to 150 mammals, 490 birds, 90 reptiles, 40 amphibians, and 108 fish species.

Classified as Endangered by the IUCN Red List, tigers are down to only about 2,500 animals in the wild. Their populations have been relentlessly punished by deforestation, poaching for traditional medicine, human-wildlife conflict, and prey decline. But tigers have also been the recipients of some of the largest conservation funds—and efforts—ever from both wildlife NGOs and governments.