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Declining Number of Tigers

  • Context (DTE): According to Wildlife Protection Society of India, India lost a record 204 tigers in 2023.
  • Reasons: Natural and other causes, Poaching, Infighting, etc.
  • Tiger is the largest cat species in the world. It is both an umbrella and flagship species.
  • Subspecies: There are eight recognised subspecies of tigers, out of which three are extinct.
    1. Bengal tiger: Indian subcontinent
    2. Amur tiger: Amur Rivers region of Russia and China, and North Korea
    3. South China tiger: South central China.
    4. Sumatran tiger: Sumatra, Indonesia.
    5. Indo-Chinese tiger: Continental south-east Asia.
    6. Caspian tiger: Turkey through central and west Asia (extinct).
    7. Javan tiger: Java, Indonesia (extinct).
    8. Bali tiger: Bali, Indonesia (extinct).
  • Habitat: Forest, savanna, shrubland, grassland, wetlands (inland), and coastal/supratidal areas.
  • Countries with most tigers: 1st India > 2nd Russia > 3rd Indonesia > 4th Nepal > 5th Thailand
  • Conservation Status:
  • Threats: Habitat loss, climate change, human-wildlife conflict, inbreeding, diseases, hunting, grazing, mining, infrastructure development, tiger farms (big cats are held captive for breeding and sale), etc.
  • Keystone species: A species whose addition to or loss from an ecosystem leads to major changes in the occurrence of at least one other species.
  • Flagship species: A species chosen to represent an environmental cause, such as an ecosystem in need of conservation.

Tiger Tiger range countries map

  • World Tiger Day is observed every year on 29th July.

Initiatives for the Protection of Tiger

Project Tiger

Global Tiger Forum (GTF)

  • It is the only inter-governmental, international body working exclusively for the conservation of Tigers in the Wild. It is a forum of 13 tiger range countries.
  • Goal: Doubling wild tigers count by 2022. India achieved this target in 2018, 4 years ahead of deadline.

Global Tiger Recovery Program

  • It is an ambitious and visionary species conservation goal set by the governments of the 13 tiger range countries during the St Petersburg Summit 2010 (St. Petersburg Declaration).

TX2 Goal

  • Target: To double the number of wild tigers.
  • Supporting Agency: World Wildlife Foundation (WWF).

Conservation Assured | Tiger Standards (CA|TS)

  • An initiative of the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF), it is a set of criteria that allows tiger sites to check if their management will lead to successful tiger conservation.

Global Tiger Initiative (GTI)

  • It was launched in 2008 as a global alliance of governments, civil society and conservation and scientific communities to save wild tigers from extinction.
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