“Every tiger counts, for Nepal and for the world.”
According to the Nepalese government’s latest survey, the country’s wild tiger population has doubled – from just 121 in 2009, to 235 in 2018.
If this continues, Nepal will become the first among 13 tiger-range countries to double its tiger population as part of the World Wildlife Fund’s TX2 program. The goal of TX2 is to increase the number of tigers globally from 3,200 in 2010 to 6,000 or more by 2022.
“Every tiger counts, for Nepal and for the world,” Dr Ghana S Gurung, WWF’s country representative for Nepal, said in a statement.
“While Nepal is but a few tigers away from our goal to double tiger numbers by 2022, it also underscores the continued need to ensure protection and improved and contiguous habitats for the long-term survival of the species.”
As much as 95 percent of the world’s tiger populations have been wiped out in the past century, no thanks to poaching and habitat destruction. But Nepal’s successful conservation efforts prove that there is hope yet.
Some of their initiatives include connecting patches of protected habitat, identifying and conserving the animal’s prey, and empowering local communities to report poachers.
“This significant increase in Nepal’s tiger population is proof that when we work together, we can save the planet’s wildlife – even species facing extinction,” Leonardo DiCaprio, whose nonprofit has funded tiger conservation in Nepal, said.
Another piece of good news out of Nepal is that a few months ago, they marked a full 365 days without any rhinos poached – the fifth instance since 2011.