Tigers are the pride of our nation. They are incredibly beautiful, intelligent animals. If you have been following our tiger series, by now you know how important tigers are to our economy and our ecology. It is beyond all doubt that tigers are worth more alive than dead. What is it then that still and really threatens tiger conservation?
Tigers are currently listed as endangered (by the IUCN Red list). Most dangerous to tiger conservation are trophy hunting, poaching for illegal trade, habitat loss, loss of primary food source, human wildlife conflict etc. Over the years, a number of strategies have been implemented (by NTCA) for tiger conservation, and yet more needs to be done.
Among initiatives, ones that can most positively impact tiger population are controlled tourism with proper monitoring and development of local communities through creation of jobs. Equally needed are: Protection and separation of tiger habitat from human reach; creation of wildlife corridors so that tigers can migrate to other national parks; implementation and execution of strict laws around poaching; education of local communities about tiger behaviour; and relocating villages around wildlife corridors or tiger reserves.
As individuals also, we can contribute significantly to tiger conservation. Strictly boycott any form of tiger products, tiger temples, zoos, artificial safari parks or any other tourism outside of their natural habitat. Visit as many tiger reserves as you can. When you are inside the reserve, make sure you follow the rules, be respectful to the animals and don't disturb them. Sustainable tourism will help the locals generate income and incentivize them for coexisting with the animals. Drive carefully around the park and report any illegal snare or activities to the forest department immediately. Using your photos and videos, encourage others around you to do the same. Together we can save our pride.