The Endangered Tiger
An endangered species is a population of organisms which is at risk of becoming extinct because it is few in numbers, or threatened by changing environmental or predation parameters. Our very own National animal, the Bengal Tiger, (with all its subspecies) is an endangered animal.
The Bengal tiger is a subspecies of tiger primarily found in Bangladesh. They are also found in pans of Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar, India and southern Tibet. It is the most numerous of the tiger sub-species. According to WWF there are about 2.000 Royal Bengal tigers in the wild today, including 1,411 in India, 450 in Bangladesh, 150 in Nepal, 100 in Bhutan, as well as a number in Myanmar and China. In the 1990s the population of the tiger was more than 3500 whereas today it is a little over 1400. The reason is due to poaching for its skin and bones which fetches a lot of money from China and Taiwan.
Steps are being taken to protect this endangered species and as of June 2009, Bengal tigers are found in 37 tiger reserves spread across 17 Indian states. In South Africa, a re-wilding project trains tiger cubs born in captivity to develop their natural instinct and fend for themselves. They are then let oil into the wild. The work has begun but there is a long way to go.