Endangered Sunday: Year of the Tiger

Happy Chinese New Year to all those who are celebrating it, but actual tigers face a sombre future. Extrapolations from the current rates of poachers killing wild tigers predict that there could well be zero tigers living in the wild by the next Chinese Year of the Tiger in 2022.

4 Bengal Tigers: colour variations

Pure White or Snow Tiger (Recessive Stripe) , White Tiger, Golden Tiger (aka Golden Tabby or Strawberry Tiger) & Bengal Tiger: the rare colour variations are extinct in the wild, and there are fewer than 2000 Bengal tigers surviving wild today

The Siberian Tiger in China is currently estimated to have fewer than 20 in the wild population, with perhaps another 30 of all other Chinese tiger species living in the most mountainous areas. 50 cats, at best. India has perhaps 1500 wild tigers. Sumatra has fewer than 400 in the wild. Meanwhile, tiger farms are springing up, especially in China, to supply the traditional medicine market which views tiger parts as a source of vitality and virility.

But the World Wildlife Fund, with support from the World Bank, has decided 2010 will be a make-or-break year for wild tigers.

They’re pushing 13 countries in which wild tigers reside to double the numbers of wild tigers by 2022.

The major threat to tigers apart from poaching is habitat loss, particularly due to forests being turned into tree plantations for paper and furniture production. Good luck to the WWF in its Year of the Tiger campaign.

Categories: environment


3 replies

  1. I would love to get behind this campaign, but the WWF is notorious for being the one of the dodgiest NGOs around in terms of enviro and race politics.
    they signed on to bullshit “clean coal” propaganda when no other enviro group would
    and generally promote a view of the natural environment as a wilderness that needs preservation from human encroachment. This often leads to the denial of indigenous peoples to access their traditional lands, in the name of preserving the “untouched” environment (when most places have been affected and managed by indigenous peoples since time immemorial).
    I guess that’s what happens with many single issue groups, but that doesn’t make it any better, and I’d encourage you to think more about the possible tactics that the WWF will use.

  2. I hope that they will do something about that. Tigers are great animals, especially Siberian tigers, which are also the largest species of cats in world.It would be a shamed to disappear.

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