It’s Grrrreat: Wild Tiger Populations On the Rise in Thailand

It’s Grrrreat: Wild Tiger Populations On the Rise in Thailand

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Tiger_in_training CC Keven Law

Thailand’s tigers are coming back from the brink — with their numbers nearly tripling here — thanks to heightened protections.

An eight-year long “census” tracked the big cats across Southeast Asia between 2005 and 2012, and found tiger populations nearly tripled in size in Thailand, where the government has carried out tough anti-poaching efforts.

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The study, published in the journal Conservation Biology, was the first ever long term study of tigers in the region. It identified 90 Indochinese tigers in Thailand’s Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary — up from their all time low of 35 just a few years earlier. Only 350 of the subspecies existed in a handful of countries in the wild in 2010.

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The Wildlife Conservation Society and Thai government have worked together for nearly 15 years to step up anti-poaching efforts, such as armed guards regularly patrolling in the sanctuary. Conservationists believe those protections have created an environment where not only tigers are safe, but their prey is multiplying too, which enables the tiger population to expand with the food source.

(READ more at Scientific American) — Photo: Keven Law, CC

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