New report finds tiger territory declines by 41% in 17 years

  • August 25, 2015

As the Economic Times of India reports on a rise in tiger numbers in India to 2,226 a new report by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) claims that an alarming 41% of tiger habitat has been lost in last 17 years.

“The tiger’s extent of occupied area is estimated at less than 1,184,911 km², a 41% decline from the area estimated in 1997. India suffered the most range contraction. While part of the difference is due to improved data after a decade of intensive tiger conservation efforts, and improved datasets and techniques, biologists consider the primary cause to be declines due to poaching and habitat loss,” says the report.
“Range decline is considered a strong indicator of population decline. Because an average of 55% of Tiger Conservation Landscapes consist of non-tiger habitat, the declines in population and area of occupancy are greater than the 41% estimated, and thus likely indicate a 50% or greater reduction”.
The report warns that a similar reduction could be expected over the next three tiger generations (20-30 years) unless conservation effort becomes more effective. The survey has also found a decrease in tiger range of 12.6% in connecting habitat corridors from 2006-2010.
“The equation in simple,” says TigerTime campaign manager, Vicky Flynn. “Tigers are forest dwellers so to save them we have to protect their forest homes and the interconnectivity between those forests if the wild tiger is to survive.”
DSWF – the conservation charity behind the TigerTime campaign – has been protecting tigers and their forest habitats for over 30 years across 21 Indian states and in the Russian Far East and Thailand. You can find out more about DSWF’s work by clicking here and join our TigerTime campaign to raise awareness and funds for wild tigers at https://davidshepherd.org/our-work/tigers