30 Jul

Press Release: Panthera’s Tigers Forever Program Gives Hope for Severely Threatened Wild Tigers

Panthera

Positive tiger conservation developments revealed at Panthera’s 7th annual Tigers Forever Meeting

New York, NY – New hope for the future of the endangered wild tiger was unveiled today by Panthera, the world’s leading wild cat conservation organization, on the fifth annual International Tiger Day.

Celebrated around the globe by national governments, NGOs, and individuals, International Tiger Day is dedicated to raising awareness for one of the world’s most recognizable and revered animals – but also one of the most endangered – the wild tiger. Fewer than 3,200 tigers remain in the wild in Asia, with only eight countries having verified breeding populations. Rampant poaching for the illegal wildlife trade is the main driver causing their decline, but habitat loss and fragmentation, loss of prey species, as well as conflict with people and livestock, are also key threats.

Just two weeks ago, Panthera’s 7th annual Tigers Forever meeting convened in Jakarta, Indonesia, bringing together an unprecedented 22 partners, including the world’s leading tiger biologists, law enforcement specialists, criminologists and international policy experts, to share conservation achievements and challenges from across Asia. Launched in 2006, Tigers Forever was the first tiger conservation program to clearly set targets and focus resources on eliminating only the most pressing threats to tigers, while measuring and monitoring impacts to ensure the stabilizing and increase of tiger numbers. Some of the recent, outstanding milestones and developments from Panthera’s Tigers Forever program include:

  • Due to tremendous law enforcement efforts by the Tambling Wildlife Nature Conservation group, tiger numbers are surging in Tambling, Indonesia. Last year we documented the highest density estimates ever recorded for tigers in Sumatra, a place that once was overrun with poachers;
  • Panthera’s longest running Tigers Forever site in Malaysia, with the Wildlife Conservation Society, now has stable tiger numbers and we’re ramping up security to help protect this critical population;
  • Panthera’s efforts in south India, with the Nature Conservation Foundation, are securing the largest system of connected Protected Areas in all of Asia, allowing tigers to move safely among breeding populations;
  • Three poachers were recently arrested around Corbett, India after being photographed by our PantheraCams;
  • We continue to develop and distribute Panthera’s camera traps, the best model on the market, which we are now evolving into PoacherCams: real-time surveillance technology to help monitor remote areas; and
  • We have expanded our Tiger Task Force to include new experts in site security, criminology and surveillance to bring much needed expertise in our fight against poachers.

Panthera CEO and world-renowned tiger scientist, Dr. Alan Rabinowitz, explained, “We are seeing successes like these from Panthera’s Tigers Forever initiatives thanks to the long-term commitment and an uncompromising focus on threat mitigation strategies proven to save tigers. Still, the road ahead is long, and the boots on the ground protecting tigers day in and day out are in the midst of a true battle against poachers to save this incredible species. To ensure our achievements continue, we must remain vigilant, with a sharp focus on investing in much-needed law enforcement, technology that is outsmarting poachers, and critical partnership-building with local governments, NGOs and communities across the tiger’s range.”

Now in its eighth year, Panthera’s Tigers Forever program is active in 14 sites across six countries in Asia to eliminate the most pressing threats facing the world’s largest wild cat. Currently, Panthera’s scientists are collaborating with 13 on-the-ground partners to impact 33% of the world’s tigers, with the goal of impacting at least 50% of the world’s wild tigers in the next two years.

Download Panthera’s Tigers Forever Brochure, Maps and Other Resources.

Panthera’s tiger scientists available for interviews on request. Contact sweller@panthera.org

About Panthera
Panthera, founded in 2006, is devoted exclusively to the conservation of wild cats and their ecosystems. Utilizing the expertise of the world’s premier cat biologists, Panthera develops and implements global conservation strategies for the most imperiled large cats – tigers, lions, jaguars, snow leopards, cheetahs, cougars and leopards. Representing the most comprehensive effort of its kind, Panthera works in partnership with local and international NGOs, scientific institutions, local communities and governments around the globe.
Visit Panthera.

About Tigers Forever
Panthera’s Tigers Forever program was launched after decades of continuing tiger declines and is changing the face of tiger conservation. Tigers Forever makes a unique commitment to increase tiger numbers at key sites by at least 50% over a 10-year period by relentlessly attacking the most critical threats to tigers – poaching of tigers and their prey. Utilizing rigorous science to maintain constant vigilance on conservation efforts and on the tiger itself, this transformative program is the only one of its kind to guarantee success – the recovery of the wild tiger.
Visit Tigers Forever.