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FAQ’S

Entrance to the Sunderbans Park1.What does the future hold for Indian tigers?
The future of the Indian people and the human race is inextricably bound up with the fate of the tiger and all the countless living organisms that form the fabric of life on this planet. Saving the India’s tigers and its land means starting from scratch in village, town and city, creating political will through the power of the people, ensuring better legislation that protects the right of wildlife to live, and enforcing the laws of the land to prevent large scale violations of the fabric of nature, this enormous challenge requires courage from each and every one of us the courage to move away from insular lives around television sets and to enter the public arena of battle through sites like this one.

The roots that bind people and tiger together have been trampled and weakened, but they can be revitalized if we work together.

Tiger bones found in recent Delhi raid2.What role do zoos play towards Indian tigers?
Zoos, parks and sanctuaries are a back up to real wild tiger conservation efforts, by controlled breeding of certain tiger to enclosures species remains as genetically strong as possible, captivity is not the best way to ensure survival of Indian tigers. Life in captivity really is a misguided answer of poaching, above all it degrades the meaning and natural purpose of wild life, but still acts as good substitute in the age where Indian wild tigers could be extinct within a few years or so. Zoos primarily do adoptions for breeding programmes to increase numbers but still gives a good opportunity for the public and zoos to maximise involvement in conservation of this sub species.

Six hundred million people look at tigers in zoos every year in India. That's a piont where people can be educated about them. Zoos should put up more boards containing information about tigers, its habitat, adoption programmes, sponsorship, and the threats it faces and so on

3.What does the tiger mean to Indian people?
Tiger is symbol of wilderness and well being of ecosystem. By conserving, adopting, donating, sponsoring tigers we believe they can be saved and therefore the entire wilderness and ecosystem is conserved. Conserving wilderness like tiger is crucial to maintain the life support system, thus saving ecosystem which is crucial for man's own survival. To the Indian people the tiger is the vehicle of Durga.

4.Are there any white tigers in the wild?
These days you can never see a white tiger in the wild not even in India. But many zoos in the world have white tiger in captivity. Barely 150 white tigers left, since last wild tiger seen in 1951-Madhya Pradesh central India. Some Indian tigers are in poor health in some zoos in India due to tsetse fly which has a fatal bite.

BENGAL TIGER SKIN5.What type of tigers are included on the stud books?
Only pure bred Indian tigers (Bengal gene) are included in studbooks never half breeds. This monitors Indian tiger growth.

6.What problems face the Indian government regarding its tigers?
Despite the valiant efforts of the Indian government and many organisations, poaching and habitat loss continue to be severe problems in India, even in the year 2000. More needs to be done to preserve the Bengal tigers now.


7.How successful is Project tiger?
Project tiger started with 9 tiger reserves in 1973 now it has 27 with around 1576 Indian tigers, which is almost half of India's whole tiger population. The rest of the remaining tigers are in the other zoos, sanctuaries or in the wild remote areas of India.

8.What are the best places to see India's tigers?

BEST PLACES TO SEE INDIA'S TIGERS

COUNTRY
ZOO, PARK OR WILDLIFE RESERVE
UK
1. HOWLETTS/PORT LYMPNE
2. IOW ZOO HAS THE BIGGEST TIGER SANCTUARY IN EUROPE.
USA
1.CINCY ZOO
2.SANDIEGO ZOO
3.MIAMI METRO ZOO
INDIA
1.BANDIPUR
2.KARNATKA
3.KANHA
4.RANTHAMBHORE
5.CORBETT
6.DUDHWA
7.MANAS
8.KARIZANGA

AN INDIAN TIGER WHO LIKES TO GET DIRTY-RANTHAMBHORE9. What is a tigers habitat like in India?
The Indian tiger is at home in a variety of environmental situations, from high altitude cold, coniferus himalayan forests to the steaming mangroves of the Sunderbans delta, from the swampy redlands of the terai to the rugged, scorched hills of the Indian Pennisula, and from the lush, wet ever green forests of the north eastern and south to the scrub thorn and forests of Rajastan.

10.How many Indian tigers at the turn of the century?
An estimate placed the population of tiger in India at the turn of the century at 40000 now its approximately 2000.

11.What role do India’s tigers play on the wilderness?
The tigers of India are the ultimate consumers in the complex food web in many of the forests ecosystems in India. The soil fertility in these ecosystems rests on the micro organisms that decompose the plant and animal residues to form humus. The diverse vegetation so supported is the food of a thriving community of herbivorous insects, birds and mammals and also helps to conserve the soil and enhance water flow. Among the terminal carnivorous users of this productivity, tiger stands at the head. Conservation of Indian tiger in its natural environment can be achieved only by total conservation of the wilderness based on an ecosystem approach, as has been established by India's Project tiger. Truly therefore the status of tigers is the index of success as a whole, in conservation of its wilderness.

A recent threat to the indian tiger population is the demannd of tiger skins for the tibetan fashion craze of fur laden robes, which is actually against sacred buddhist teachings of life.

TIGER LOOKING ON ITS PREY-RANTHAMBHORE12.Why has there been a considerable decline of India's tigers?
Due to hunting, killing tigers for sport and other trophies in the early part of the century, big numbers were slaughtered by rajas (kings of India) and the British, because of its savage beauty and might and its ability to melt into the forests like a phantom not only whethered the hunters spirit of adventure but also provided the base for countless juicy shikar tiger hunting stories. Many were shot on elephant so the hunters would be safe. Jim Corbett predicted in 1946 that all of India’s tigers would be extinct in 10 -15 years only 3000 were left in the wild at this time from the 40000 at the beginning of century. Another important reason for the decline was the fact that many of tiger prey were killed also during these slaughter periods. As a result many cubs starved of death. Crop protection guns were also freely available to kill any wild animal. Jeeps came and also proved to be useful for tiger hunters. Nowadays poaching for illegal trade still happens, mining, and deforestation is destroying the tiger. The Tsetse fly also has proved to kill many tigers in captivity due to its fatal bite. It was really Corbetts figures of only 2500 tigers which called for IUCN to take urgent action to save Indian tigers. This set in motion a whole range of conservation measures i.e. Project tiger. As well as poaching cattle grazing is also a very big problem, which leads to loss of habitat for P.t.tigris. Goto

www.bcps.org/offices/lis/models/studshow/pinegrovems/HANNAHNABBYB/BENGAL_TIGER.HTM for more information on the threats tigers face in India.

13.How many Bengal tigers in the world today (mid 2005)?

COUNTRY Minimum Maximum
India
1900

2100

China
30
35
Thailand
300
400
Usa
25
30
Bhutan
50
240
Bangladesh
362
362
Nepal
93
UK
30
35

TIGER BONESSo we could say approximately there are 4000-4700 Indian tigers in the wild today and in Captivity which is still a considerably good figure compared to the future of the South China tiger of which there are about 50 in captivity and probably none left in the wild as there has been no validated recorded for years.

The numbers above for USA includes white and normal coloured Bengal tigers kept in zoos and does not include those which may be kept as pets which may be in the hundreds.

14.How many zoos in the world have Bengal tigers?
There are approximately 64 zoos with Bengal tigers.

15.How many tiger protection areas are there in India?
66 protected areas, 28 fall under the umbrella of Project tiger organisation.

16.Are white tigers mutants of Bengal tigers?
Yes with recessive genes.

17.Which tiger species are now extinct?
Javan, Caspian and Bali tiger.

18. How many white tigers in the world's zoos?
More than 100 white tigers live in the world's zoos.

19.How many tigers are captive in India?
333 are captive all over India, 40 of which are white Bengal tigers. (figure correct 2004)

TIGER WAITING TO SCAVENGE A CROCODILE'S MEAL20.What is the typical diet of Indian tigers in zoos and the wild?
Indian tigers are fed more often or course with cubs. It is fundamental for zoo's to run P.t.tigris adoption programs to help with food costs which can be costly.

This poses a big problem in some Asian zoos. This web site encourages you to visit and adopt P.t.tigris in zoos. See if you can help us to help them.

A typical diet of P.t.tigris in the wild is chital (spotted deer), baby rhinos, sambar, occasionally crocodile, giant pythons, cattle, langurs,leopards,wild boar, most ungulates, gaur, munjjak.Ullas Karanth at Nagarahole estimates a male tiger needs 3600 kg, but the female needs 3000kg of living meat to sustain them for a year.

Tigers are fed twice week in zoos this mimics their hunting success in the wild and also their feeding habits, they tend to consume large quantities of meat in one sitting, store it if possible and return to it again when hungry. A P.t.tigris at most zoos would eat something equivalent to:

1.Half of the front or back leg of horses

2.Also pelvis, rib joints or split head of horse.

22.What can the students and schools of India do to help the tiger?
Students can start nature rooms and clubs in school. There are lots of interesting speakers in chennai who could be brought in as speakers. The bishnoi tribe in rajastan will give themselves to be killed to save the chinkara ( a species of deer). These are all inspiring people who can be brought in to teach conservation.

23.What should we do to save the tiger?
Under the existing laws, wvery person can seek to protect the forests at the supreme court or high court level. So if you know someone is violating the law and destroying a forest, you can report it.every person- whether a doctor, a journalst, a child, a lawyer, a teacher- needs to be involved in this process. Many conservationists agree that by saving the natural world including tiger we all have a chance to survive in the future.

24.Are there enough laws to protect the tiger? Yes.it's just that people are not aware.
India has 20 per cent of the world's forests and we need to protect them.the indian tiger is a symbol of a healthy environment.

25.What is the biggest threat the tiger faces?
By far the biggest threat is habitat destruction. Poachers are last in line.

26.Did Jim Corbett give tigers a bad name with his stories about man eaters?
He didn't intend to do that it but yes. Between 1875 and 1925, 80,000 tigers were shot and more than 50,000 were injured.the injured tigers, unable to hunt for themselves, turn into man-eater. When you detroy the forests the tiger lives in, it has nowhere to go, that's when it starts attacking human beings. Jim Corbett did call the tiger a gentleman, but then that fact is forgotten in the excitement of the chase. Tigers are not dangerous as Valmik Thapar once said' i feel safer walking with tigers than to walk on the streets of a city.

27.How does india count it's tigers?
While the tracing of pugmarks method continues to be used by the indian forest department as a basic census device, scientists are now using more accurate counting methods involving radio collaring, camera trapping, dna sampling of their scats(which are the faeces of tiger), and satellite monitoring, but these can be much more time consuming and expensive compared with the pugmark method.

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