For the first time number of wild tigers has increased close to 4,000, according to the wildlife estimates. Since 1900, it is for the first time tiger count has jumped 22 per cent. The surprising climb can be attributed to a number of factors ranging from increase in tiger population in India, Russia, Nepal and Bhutan and enhanced protection of the endangered species in these countries.
“For the first time after decades of constant decline, tiger numbers are on the rise,” said Marco Lambertini, director general of WWF International(WWF). These latest figures on the tiger count have been compiled from tiger surveys across the world. WWF has released the data just ahead of a major tiger conservation meeting that kicks off this week in India.
PM Narendra Modi will open the conference by addressing the importance of tigers, their role in promoting country's ecological well-being, WWF said. Owing to poaching and habitat loss tigers have been on the verge of extinction. But these stats are indeed a new hope for the world tigers.
India’s tiger count stands at 2,226 according to the latest survey, Russia holds the second highest number of wildcats at 433. Indonesia has 371 tigers while Malaysia 250. Nepal, Thailand, Bangladesh and Bhutan have 198, 189, 106 and 103 tigers each, according to the data compiled by the wildlife groups.
Other countries which have tigers are Myanmar, China and Laos. In 2014, tiger range governments agreed to announce a new global tiger estimate by 2016, based on full, systematic national surveys.
However, not all countries have completed or published these surveys and the new minimum estimate of close to 3,900 tigers is based on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species account for tigers, updated for countries where national tiger surveys have taken place since the IUCN assessment.
(With PTI inputs)