100 years ago there were 8 different kinds of tigers (subspecies) - there were over 100,000 wild tigers in the world. Today, there are only 5 tiger subspecies left and there are fewer than 7,000 wild tigers in the world. The main threats to tigers are poaching, loss of habitat, and population fragmentation. INTRODUCTION
Not only is tiger a beautiful animal but it is also the indicator of the forest's health. Saving the tiger means we save the forest since tiger cannot live in places where trees have vanished and in turn secure food and water for all. If we make sure tigers live, we have to make sure that deer, antelope and all other animals that the tiger eats (its prey base) live.
Also forests catch and help store rainwater and protect soils. In this way we protect our rivers and recharge groundwater sources. Areas with less trees lead to floods, killing people and destroying homes. It takes away the precious soil, leaving behind a wasteland. The soil jams up our lakes and dams, reducing their ability to store water. By destroying the tiger's home, we not only harm tigers, but also ourselves. SAVING THE TIGER MEANS SAVING THE MANKIND
The tiger, one of the most magnificent animals in the world, is also one of the most endangered. A cat of beauty, strength, and majesty, the tiger is master of all and subject to none -- except humans. The tiger thus becomes the symbol for the protection of all species on our earth since it is at the top of the food chain. This is why we sometimes call the tiger, an apex predator, an indicator of our ecosystem's health . WHY SHOULD WE SAVE TIGER ?
Local institutions and people Scientists who were closely involved in managing tigers at the local level pointed out an important lesson more than a decade ago: unless local community needs are met, conservation of the tiger will not succeed and protected areas will perish. Conservation of tiger habitat and of prey In many areas peripheral to tiger habitat, grazing lands for livestock have been converted to crops or degraded by excessive use; livestock is of poor quality and of poor productivity; wood for fuel and building has been exhausted; and sources of income are limited. WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE TO SAVE THE TIGER ?
"Do not cut down the forest with its tigers and do not vanish the tigers from the forest.The tiger perishes without the forest, and the forest perishes without its tigers.Therefore the tiger should stand guard over the forest and the forest should protect all its tigers". WHY SAVE THE TIGERS ?
The Tiger is endangered because it is poached for its body parts to cater to an illegal market. Another reason is habitat loss due to depletion of forest cover interference of humans and encroachment of forest land by people causing fragmentation. At the turn of the century, there were almost reportedly 40,000 tigers in India, but now only around 4,000 remain in the wild. REASONS FOR THE ENDANGERED STATUS
Bengal Tigers form the largest subspecies of tigers in the world. Most commonly found in India and Bangladesh, they are the ‘national animal’ of both these countries. Living in grasslands and in rainforests, they can weight up to 220kg. The Bengal Tiger population is very fragile today: they have nearly been driven to extinction and numerous projects are now in place to preserve the population. Although they do not typically hunt humans, they may do so in cases of extreme hunger. Today, deforestation and urbanization have a major impact on the Bengal Tiger population. Tigers are forced to move out from their natural habitats and as a result can no longer easily hunt food. BENGAL TIGERS
These lovely tigers were larger in number only a few decades ago, and were sometimes called north China tigers as they could also be found in north China, in addition to Mongolia and Korea. Then they started getting fewer to the extent where one could no longer find them in south Korea, and their population has become very rare in China (a couple dozen) and Mongolia. They kept decreasing in size until reaching only a fewer dozens (less than 50) in the mid 20th century. It was then that efforts were taken in order to save them from extinction. They are now heavily protected and mostly kept in zoos where a close eye can kept on them. Luckily, over five hundred tigers can be accounted for nowadays, but still, this is considered a very low number (close to the Sumatran tiger population).
One particularly controversial incident was the complete loss of the Bengal Tiger population in the ‘Sariska Tiger Reserve’ as a result of hunting.
Experts estimate that the south China tiger population does not exceed two to three dozens only! This has earned it a ranking between the world’s top 10 animals that are on the verge of extinction � pretty sad. What has mainly contributed to the reduction of the South Chinese tiger population is the amount of illegal hunting that has taken place in these southern forests, in addition to the reduction in the number of prey it can hunt (again, mostly due to humans).
Unethical Breeding Due to their larger size and the unique white colour zoos, circuses and private owners have turned the breeding and rearing of white tigers into big business. In the wild white tigers are extremely rare due to the scarcity and low probability of a tiger inheriting both recessive genes (chances are 1 in 10,000) but in captivity breeders are taking white tigers and breeding them with each other. Father with daughter, brother with sister etc.
Why do they keep inbreeding ? The answer of course is related to money. White tigers are a part of the ever expanding exotic animals trade which has grown to become a multi million dollar business and is second only to the illegal drug trade business. Zoo’s, circuses and private owners openly admit that the white tiger serves as a great attraction for visitors increasing visitors and of course revenues. A white tiger can sell for as much as $100,000 so if you already own a couple why not breed them create some cubs and sell them off for some extra profit.
Establishments and individuals who claim their trying to save or keep the species alive are simply manipulating the truth to keep their unethical activities alive. Breeding of white tigers is nothing short of evil and benefits the tiger species in no way what so ever.