In the news: Recently the Prime Minister released the 4th cycle of All India tiger Estimate.
Source: times of India
More about the news:
- It was decided in St. Petersburg that the target of doubling the tiger population would be 2022.India completed this target four years early.
- Tiger Census Report is a four-year report.
- It is carried out by Wildlife Institute of India (WII – funded by MoEF) and NTCA.
- The tiger bearing habitats were divided into five landscape regions—Shivalik-Gangetic plains, Central India and the Eastern Ghats, Western Ghats, North Eastern Hills and Brahmaputra Flood Plains and the Sundarbans.
Highlights of the survey:
- According to this survey the count of tigers in India, has risen to 2967, in 2018 with more than half of them in Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka.
- Growth has not been uniform across all 18 states where tigers are found. The count has decreased drastically from 46 to 19 in Chhattisgarh. In Odisha, it has been on a continual decline over the years and now stands at 28.
- MP had the highest rise of 218 tigers, reaching an estimated 526, followed by Karnataka with 524.
- A total of 2,461 individual tigers more than a year old were photo-captured as part of the census
- The net loss in tiger-occupied area to be 17,881 sq km or 20% of the tiger habitat in four years.
- No tiger was recorded in Buxa (West Bengal), Dampa (Mizoram) and Palamu (Jharkhand) tiger reserves.
Tiger Reserves: There are 50 tiger reserves in India which are governed by Project Tiger which is administered by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA).
Conservation status of Tiger
- IUCN Red List: Endangered
- Wild life protection Act: Schedule 1
- CITES: Appendix 1
Tiger conservation efforts in India:
- Project Tiger is a tiger conservation programme launched in April 1973 by the Government of India.
- The project aims at ensuring a viable population of Bengal tigers in their natural habitats, protecting them from extinction, and preserving areas of biological importance as a natural heritage forever represented as close as possible the diversity of ecosystems across the distribution of tigers in the country.
- Tiger Protection force: The government has set up a Tiger Protection Force to combat poachers and funded relocation of villagers to minimize human-tiger conflicts.
Monitoring System for Tigers - Intensive Protection and Ecological Status is a software-based monitoring system launched across Indian tiger reserves by the Indian government's National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) in 2010.
- The system's objective is to strengthen patrolling and surveillance of the Endangered Bengal tiger. Forest guards in tiger reserves are equipped with personal digital assistants and GPS devices to capture data relating to tiger sightings, deaths, wildlife crime and ecological observations while patrolling.
- The software system maps the patrol routes of forest guards, and the resulting data are then analyzed in a geographic information system. This is intended to enhance the effectiveness and spatial coverage of patrols.
National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA): It is a statutory body established in 2006 under MoEFCC performing functions as provided in the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. Presently It implements major tiger conservation initiatives like project tiger, Tiger conservation plan etc.
The Environment Minister is the Chairman of the NTCA. Below chairman are eight experts or professionals having qualifications and experience in wildlife.
Tiger Conservation Efforts at global level
Global tiger forum: The Global Tiger Forum (GTF) is the only inter- governmental international body established with members from willing countries to embark on a global campaign to protect the Tiger.
- Utilizing co-operative policies, common approaches, technical expertise, scientific modules and other appropriate programmes and controls the GTF is focused on saving the remaining 5 subspecies of Tigers distributed over 13 Tiger Range countries of the world.
- The GTF was formed in 1993 on recommendations from an international symposium on Tiger Conservation at New Delhi, India.
Global Tiger Initiative (GTI): It was launched in 2008 as a global alliance of governments, international organizations, civil society, the conservation and scientific communities and the private sector, with the aim of working together to save wild tigers from extinction. In 2013, the scope was broadened to include Snow Leopards.
Tx2: An ambitious and visionary species conservation goal was set by the governments of the 13 tiger range countries:
- To double the number of wild tigers by 2022 – the next Chinese year of the tiger.
Conservation Assured (CA|TS): It is a new conservation tool to set minimum standards for effective management of target species and to encourage assessment of these standards in relevant conservation / protected areas.
The Conservation Assured | Tiger Standards (CA|TS) survey is the first and largest rapid assessment of site-based tiger conservation across Asia.
Three sites - Lansdowne Forest Division in Uttarakhand, India, Chitwan National Park in Nepal and Sikhote-Alin Nature Reserve in Russia - have been awarded CA|TS Approved status
- The first species-specific CA standards are for the tiger (Panthera tigris).
- Developed by WWF and partners, the Global Tiger Forum (GTF) has endorsed CA|TS and has requested member countries to establish National Review Committees for purpose of initiating CA|TS.
- Nepal is the first TRC to implement the process; Bhutan, Bangladesh, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and India are following Nepal’s lead.
- CA|TS is an important tool in the achievement of the CBD’s Global Aichi Targets.
- CA|TS is based on a set of seven pillars with 17 minimum standards and associated criteria for effective management. CA|TS addresses multiple factors which impact conservation management, including support for resident human populations (including their social, cultural, spiritual and economic needs), enhancing overall biodiversity richness, prey-base and habitat cover, and also considers the legal context of an area in terms of content, application and capacity of those on the ground to enforce those laws.