The wild tiger population has witnessed a substantial drop since the last century, as widespread deforestation has made the animals lose their habitats as well as the excessive hunt has helped reduce its numbers. Although new studies have suggested that tiger population could double in size in the next six years, wild tigers are on the brink of extinction, with less than 4,000 wild tigers worldwide.
The World Wildlife Fund has been a crucial figure to defend wild tigers in the past decade and also has estimated the number of great felines, giving the shocking amount of 3,890 wild tigers alive today. India for example, is the host of over 50 percent of today’s wild tiger populations with over 2,000 tigers in the country alone.
Yet countries such as Bhutan, Bangladesh and China have the lowest amount of wild tigers, mainly because of the hunt for tigers, which has been out of control in the past decade. Still, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) claims the number of tigers is on the rise, thanks to the programs introduced in Nepal, Russia, and India. In order to address the problem tigers have experienced over the past century, the countries hosting these magnificent animals have applied for several programs.
These programs provide tigers with a safe environment for them to thrive in, as well as giving them the opportunity to reproduce in a protected area. Also, stopping the widespread habitat loss for wild tigers is the main focus of these programs, as this could be the main factor that brought wild tigers near extinction. Animal rights advocates have long proposed for tiger habitats to be secured by the WWF, yet people wanting to hunt tigers always find a way to get through security.
— WWF Tigers (@WWF_tigers) April 10, 2016
Nevertheless, a number of tigers across the globe seems to be on the rise, according to the WWF. Even though the increase of tiger populations has been credited to India, Nepal and Russia for its effectiveness in securing their habitats, there’s a need for more preventive measures to keep up the pace.
New approaches for increasing tigers’ population
The WWF claims that better tracking technology could be a major asset in studying the tiger’s conduct, which could translate to a better understanding of the animal. This, in turn, would allow researchers and animal rights advocates to find the most suitable way for tigers to reproduce safely and start filling the gaps.
Since 2000, the tiger has been described as an endangered species, although it wasn’t until 2010 that tiger populations reached an all-times low. Now, researchers from WWF claim there are almost 700 more wild tigers in comparison to the reports from six years ago.
And although 700 tigers don’t seem much for 6 years, it’s an acceptable amount considering the current worldwide population rates for wild tigers are less than 4,000. The WWF’s senior vice president of wildlife conservation Ginette Hemley claimed that even if the total number of tigers doesn’t seem like much, what’s important is the trend. And the trend is going on the rise, which is the right direction, said Hemley.