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International Tiger Day: 29 July

Date: 29 July 2019 Tags: Biodiversity

The International Tiger Day (also known as Global Tiger Day) is celebrated every year on 29 July across the world to raise awareness about tiger conservation, protect their natural habitat and support tiger conservation issues.

About International Tiger Day

Its goal is to promote global system for protectingnatural habitats of tigers and to raise public awareness and support for tiger conservation issues. It was instituted in 2010 at Saint Petersberg Tiger Summit in Russia to raise awareness regarding tiger conservation in view of alarming fall in the number of wild tigers. This summit had issued St. Petersburg Declaration on Tiger Conservation where Governments of tiger range countries had vowed to double tiger population by the year 2020.

Background

According to World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) there are only around 3,900 wild tigers left in the world, of them, India with more than 2800 tigers has the highest number. Since beginning of the 20th century, , 97% of world’s  wild tiger population has disappeared due to many factors including hunting and poaching, habitat loss and climate change.

Causes of decline in their numbers

  • Poaching and illegal trade: Poaching is greatest, most immediate threat to the survival of wild tigers. Tigers face poaching for demand of theuir every body part from whiskers to tail for traditional Chinese medicines. Their body parts fetch high prices in the illegal wildlife trades.
  • Habitat loss: Clearing of forests for various purposes for agriculture, timber, development activity etc has resulted in lost of 93% natural habitat of tigers across the world. It has lowered chances of survival and is also leading to conflict with humans, where both are competing for their own space.
  • Climate change: Rising sea level as result of climate change is also wiping out Sundarbans (in India and Bangladesh, one of the last remaining habitats of majestic Royal Bengal tigers.