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Tigers under high stress levels induced by tourism: Study

Date: 16 July 2019 Tags: Biodiversity

A recent study conducted by Hyderabad-based Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) has found that Tigers in Bandhavgarh, Kanha and Sariska Tiger Reserves are under tremendous stress induced by tourism and this is probably affecting their reproduction, a

About Study

It examined relationship between anthropogenic disturbances and physiological stress levels in tiger populations in protected areas. It mainly assessed concentrations of fecal glucocorticoid metabolite (fGCM) — a stress marker among tigers. Total of 341 fecal samples were collected from Bandhavgarh and Kanha reserves during tourist and off-peak seasons, besides data on various anthropogenic disturbances, including tourism activities.

Findings of Study

It suggests that unsustainable wildlife tourism causes distinct physiological stress in tigers in protected areas. The stress levels of tigers during 8-9 month tourism period were very, very high. It was known that females undergo more stress, but it was also found that males were also under tremendous stress. The correlation of stress levels depending on the number of vehicles entering tiger reserves was found.

Solution: It recommends strict regulation of vehicular traffic, and reducing other anthropogenic disturbances.