Tiger’s number grows to 3683 , India harbour 75% of global count

Revised data of tiger’s population, released on the Global Tiger day at Corbet Tiger reserve, confirms presence of 785 tigers in Madhya Pradesh

Hotel Wildlife sanctuary

New Delhi: Tiger’s population in India has gone up to 3682 in 2022 vis-a-vis 2967 in 2018, indicating an annual growth of 6.1%, revealed a comprehensive tiger report released by the Union ministry of forest, environment and climate change at Corbet Tiger Reserve to mark the Global Tiger day on Saturday.

The fresh data on tigers’ population was prepared by the Wildlife Institute of India based on further analysis of both camera-trapped and non-camera-trapped tiger presence areas. “The upper limit of the tiger population is estimated to be 3925 and the average number is 3682 tigers,” said the Union minister of state for forest environment and climate change (MoFE&CC) Ashwini Kumar Chaubey, adding that India currently harbours almost 75% of the world’s wild tiger population.

Also Read: India home to 70% of total tiger population in world

On April 9, 2022, during the celebration of 50 years of the Project Tiger at Mysusru, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had declared the minimum tiger population of 3167, which is the population estimate from the camera-trapped area.

Project Tiger

In 1973, the Government of India launched Project Tiger, an ambitious, holistic conservation project, aimed at safeguarding the nation’s tiger population and preserving biodiversity. Over the past fifty years, Project Tiger has achieved commendable success, making significant strides in tiger conservation. Initially covering nine tiger reserves spanning 18,278 km2, the project has flourished into a remarkable accomplishment with 53 reserves spread across 75,796 km2, effectively covering 2.3% of India’s total land area.

Also Read: Tigers’ count goes to 3,167 in India, 200 added in last 4 years

1st Phase of Tiger’s conservation

The first phase of tiger conservation in the 1970s focused on enacting the Wildlife Protection Act and establishing protected areas for tigers and tropical forests. However, the 1980s saw a decline due to extensive poaching. In response, the government initiated the second phase in 2005, adopting a landscape-level approach, community involvement & support, implementing strict law enforcement, and using modern technology for scientific monitoring to ensure tiger conservation. This approach not only led to an increase in the tiger population, but also had several critical outcomes that included the designation of inviolate critical core and buffer areas, the identification of new tiger reserves, and the recognition of tiger landscapes and corridors.

Scientific monitoring of Tiger’s presence

The monitoring exercise inculcated scientific thinking amongst forest staff and employment of technology ensured transparency of data collection and analysis. India categorized tiger habitats into five major landscapes based on biogeography and interconnectivity, enabling effective ecological and management-based strategies.

Also Read: Forest ministry asks states to enquire causes of rise in tigers’ death

With significant changes in the spatial patterns of tiger occurrence and an increase in unique tiger sightings from 2461 in 2018 to 3080 in 2022, now more than 3/4th of the tiger population is found within protected areas.

Shivalik Hills & Gangetic Plains witness notable increase

Central India and the Shivalik Hills and Gangetic Plains witnessed a notable increases in tiger population, particularly in the states of Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and Maharashtra. However, certain regions, such as the Western Ghats, experienced localized declines, necessitating targeted monitoring and conservation efforts. Some states, including Mizoram, Nagaland, Jharkhand, Goa, Chhattisgarh, and Arunachal Pradesh, have reported disquieting trends with small tiger populations.

Madhya Pradesh home to max number of tigers

The largest tiger population of 785 is in Madhya Pradesh, followed by Karnataka (563) & Uttarakhand (560), and Maharashtra (444). The tiger abundance within the Tiger Reserve is highest in Corbett (260), followed by Bandipur (150), Nagarhole (141), Bandhavgarh (135), Dudhwa (135), Mudumalai(114), Kanha (105), Kaziranga (104), Sundarbans (100), Tadoba (97), Sathyamangalam (85), and Pench-MP (77).

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Various tiger reserves have shown remarkable growth, while others face challenges. Approximately 35% of the tiger reserves urgently require enhanced protection measures, habitat restoration, ungulate augmentation, and subsequent tiger reintroduction.

Report bats for eco-friendly development agenda

To preserve ecological integrity, there is need to strongly continue eco-friendly development agenda, minimize mining impacts, and rehabilitate mining sites. Additionally, fortifying protected area management, intensifying anti-poaching measures, employing scientific thinking and technology-driven data collection, and addressing human-wildlife conflict are vital steps to protect the country’s tiger populations.

Also Read: Bannerghatta biological park declare the death of tiger

India’s Project Tiger has made tremendous progress in tiger conservation over the past five decades, but challenges like poaching is still a threat to tiger conservation. Continued efforts to protect tiger habitats and corridors are crucial for securing the future of India’s tigers and their ecosystems for generations to come.

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