Global Tiger Day Current Affairs - 2019

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All India Tiger Estimation Report 2018 released

As per the All India Tiger Estimation Report 2018 India has 2,967 tigers, a third more than in 2014. The Tiger census made public on occasion of Global Tiger Day (29 July) by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Key Findings

Top 5 Performing States: Madhya Pradesh saw highest number at 526, followed by Karnataka (524), Uttarakhand (442), Maharashtra (312) and Tamil Nadu (264).

States that saw Decline in Tiger Population: Chhattisgarh and Mizoram. While all other States saw a Positive increase.

Highest Number of Tigers:  found in Pench Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh.

Maximum Improvement in Tiger Population since 2014: recoded in Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve in Tamil

4th cycle of the Management Effectiveness Evaluation of Tiger Reserves (MEETR), which evaluates India’s 50 tiger sanctuaries was also released along with 4th National Tiger Estimation (Tiger census). According to it-

Pench sanctuary (MP) and Periyar sanctuary of Kerala emerged as best managed tiger reserves in country. Top performers scored 93.75%.

Dampa Reserve (Mizoram) and Rajaji reserve (Uttarakhand) with score of 42.97% and 44.53% respectively were left at bottom of ladder.

Chhattisgarh was least performing State in reserve management.

Methodology: Sanctuaries, which spanned 80 States, were divided into 5 geographic clusters and on the whole, Western Ghats cluster comprising reserves in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka scored an average of 81%. A score of 75% and above is rated ‘very good’ and score of 41% and above was marked as ‘fair’.

4th National Tiger Estimation (Tiger census)

It is 4th such tiger survey since 2006. It is a gargantuan exercise and is conducted once in 4 years. Latest survey is culmination of 15 months (1.3 year) of forest officials surveying 3,81,400 sq-km of forested habitat, installing 26,760 camera traps and wildlife biologists digging by 35 million images of wildlife- 76,523 out of which were tigers (there can be multiple images of same tiger). Nearly 83% of estimated tiger population was captured in these images.

 

29 July: International Tiger Day (Global Tiger Day)

Every year 29 July is celebrated across the world as Global Tiger Day to create awareness about tiger conservation and protection of natural habitat of tigers.

Why 29 July? This is because 29 July act as a reminder of agreement signed by countries at Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit in Russia in 2010, to raise awareness about decline of global tiger population. Signatories declared an agreement that governments of tiger-populated countries would double animal’s population by 2022.

Global Tiger Day 2019

On occasion of Global Tiger Day 2019 Prime Minister Narendra Modi will release results of 4th cycle of All India Tiger Estimation (AITE) in New Delhi. The Tiger Estimation exercise is believed to be world’s largest wildlife survey effort in terms of- coverage, quantum of camera trapping and intensity of sampling. In India All India Tiger Estimation is conducts in every 4 years.

Government of India and National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has also carried out an economic valuation of tigers in mitigating adverse impact of climate change.

Tiger Conservation in India

Tigers are one of world’s most iconic species. Tigers are an ‘Umbrella Species’ as their conservation also conserves many other species in same area.

Thus with initiative of conserving India’s national animal, Project Tiger was launched in 1973. Due to planned efforts under Project Tiger, at present India has distinction of having maximum number of tigers in world. The 2014 country level tiger assessment had shown a 30% increase of tigers i.e. from 1706 in 2010, tiger population has increased to 2226 in 2014.

However, despite conservation efforts since 1970s, wild tiger populations showed a rapid decline therefore in 2010, during St. Petersburg Declaration, tiger range countries had resolved to double tiger numbers by 2022.

Significance: Observing World Tiger Day is significant because according to World Wildlife Fund (WWF), currently there are only around 3,900 wild tigers in world and as per reports, since the beginning of 20th century around 95% of global tiger population has been lost to various activities like poaching, etc.