Shrinking density of Tigers in India:

  • While conservation efforts are aimed at increasing the tiger count in India, global experts and officials in the government suggest that India must also prepare for a new challenge — of reaching the limits of its management capacity.
  • Officially, India had 2,226 tigers as of 2014. An ongoing census is expected to reveal an update to these numbers. India’s current capacity to host tigers ranged from 2,500-3,000 tigers. Moreover, 25-35% of India’s tigers now lived outside protected reserves.
  • With dwindling core forests as well as the shrinking of tiger corridors (strips of land that allow tigers to move unfettered across diverse habitat), there were several challenges — alongside the traditional challenges of poaching and man-animal conflict — to India’s success at tiger conservation. Recent attempts at translocating tigers to unpopulated reserves, such as Satkosia in Orissa, have ended badly, with one of the tigers dying.
  • Overall, given the low availability of prey in some reserves, this is the capacity that can be supported. However, there are vast tracts of potential tiger habitat that can be used to improve prey density, develop tiger corridors and therefore support a much larger population.
  • They would estimate the potential carrying capacity for tigers in India at 10,000 to 15,000, not the 3,000 which they already have. When tiger recovery efforts began 50 years ago they had about 2,000 tigers. If after all this effort and expenditure, they are satisfied with just 3,000 tigers, it points at a serious management problem: needlessly huge amount of money is being dumped repeatedly on the same 25,000-30,000 sq. km area where tigers are already at saturation densities, while other areas with potential for future recovery are starved of key investments.
  • Since 2006, the WII (Wildlife Institute of India)  has been tasked with coordinating the tiger estimation exercise. The once-in-four-years exercise calculated, in 2006, that India had only 1,411 tigers. This rose to 1,706 in 2010 and 2,226 in 2014 on the back of improved conservation measures and new estimation methods.

This data is obtained from THE HINDU-dated 29/01/2019.

The above mentioned data is required for MAINS purpose than PRELIMS. This data includes challenges, Issues, habitat and investment for development aspects in India. Please note this who are more concentrating on IFS (Indian Forest Service). 

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