Bengal tiger number rises in Sundarbans
Published: 04:00 PM, 22 May 2019 Updated: 10:25 AM, 23 May 2019
A total of 114 Royal Bengal tigers was recorded in the Bangladesh part of the Sundarbans in 2018, according to the latest tiger census. However, 106 tigers recorded during the previous survey in 2015. So, the number of tigers rises by eight in 3 years.
Bangladesh Forest Department reported this after the tiger census. The Department will release a report on the census titled “Second Phase Status of Tiger in Bangladesh Sundarbans 2018” soon.
The census on the critically endangered species was conducted dividing the Sundarbans into three areas - Khulna, Bagerhat and Satkhira. The census in Satkhira was conducted in 2017. The following year, the census was carried out in Khulna and Bagerhat.
Forest officials said they conducted the camera trap census in 1,659 sq km of core tiger population areas in the Sundarbans.
Of the total area, 1,208 square kilometres is in Satkhira, 165 square kilometres in Khulna and 286 square kilometres in Shoronkhola, Bagerhat.
Forest officials installed 491 cameras on trees at 239 points of the Sundarbans and collected 2,500 images of tigers during a 249-day survey.
Analysing the images of tigers, experts projected that the total number of Bengal tigers is 114. Indian tiger experts helped the forest department officials conduct the census.
According to the Tiger Census 2015, the tiger population was only 106 in the Bangladesh part of the Sundarbans, down from 440, including 21 cubs, in 2004. The census in 2004 was conducted based on pugmark.
Poaching of tigers and its prey, including deer, and habitat loss are the major threats to the Bengal tiger.
Several steps have been taken by Bangladesh for tiger conservation, including Tiger Action Plan 2009-2017, National Tiger Recovery Programme, and an amendment to the Forest Act, 2012.