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Growing Sea Levels Put Bengal Tigers at Risk, Says IUCN

Royal Tiger or more ordinarily Bengal Tiger started undergoing a decreasing tendency since 2011. It posed such an intense effect on these species that the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) declared them to be endangered in 2010.


Photo Credit: Koshy Koshy


Now, IUCN also declared that growing sea levels triggered by alteration in climate puts the Bengal tigers at risk.

On the occasion of International Tiger Day yesterday, IUCN in context to a World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) said that instead of alleviating attempts the predicted almost a foot sea level by 2070 will possibly damage almost the whole Sundarbans tiger habitat.

This is specifically a huge threat to the tiger population of India because the largest tiger population across the globe is confined in the Sundarbans, situated in West Bengal.

IUCN stated in their International Tiger’s Day website that Sundarbans shelters Bengal Tigers and shields coastal areas from storm gushes and wind destruction, but growing sea levels triggered by alteration in climate pose a threat to destroy these forests and the only remaining territory of tiger population.

The organization also reported that there were 100,000 tigers in 1913 which decreased to a meager 3,274 in 2013 and 3,000 at present. The numbers were 3200 in 2014. IUCN said that the world witnessed the loss of around 97 percent of tigers over the span of a century.

This comes as a surprise because India, which comprises of 70 percent of the global population of tigers showed stable increase in the tiger population.

Emphasizing the need to contribute in the expansion of tiger population, IUCN cautioned that if the current rate of deterioration of the tiger population continues “all tigers living in the wild could be extinct in 5 years.”

The latest tiger census revealed this year showed that the tiger population in India has elevated from 1,706 in 2011 to 2,226 in 2014, which is a 30 percent spike. Karnataka was reported to have the most number of tigers with 408.

India has the highest number of tigers in the world, currently with 1,706.

In an official statement, Inger Anderson who is the Director General of IUCN said that it’s unthinkable that a creature as magnificent as a tiger that “inspired the awe and wonder” of one’s childhood might be forced to the verge of extinction.

He added that in order to save tiger population in longer term, preservation and renovation of habitations, close monitoring of populations and ceasing poaching is needed.

IUCN reported that other than alteration in climate, urbanization and modernization are also two of the chief factors for the deterioration of tiger population. 93 percent of tigers lost their natural territory, owing to the growth of cities and agriculture by humankind. Very less tigers can endure in minor and dispersed islands of habitations that in return cause superior risk of inbreeding and make them more prone to poaching.

IUCN also reported that in the fight for space between humankind and tigers, the latter are compelled on survive on forests that human beings thrive on for food, agriculture, wood business, etc. This triggers them to either slaughter or seize the tigers.

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