International tiger day is celebrated worldwide on 29th of July every year to raise awareness about the decline of the world tiger population.
The goal of the day is to promote a global system for protecting the natural habitats of tigers and to raise public awareness and support for tiger conservation issues.
History and significance of this day:
In the year 2010 at Saint Petersburg, Russia there was held a tiger summit known as “Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit”.
This summit was hosted by Russia and co-hosted by the Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin and Robert Zoellick (the world bank President).
Many international tiger organizations and 13 tiger-range countries were joined there.
The 13 tiger range countries are India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Russia, China, Nepal, Bhutan, Thailand, Bangladesh, Cambodia. Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar.
All of the countries signed an agreement there and set a resolution of making double the tiger population by the year 2022.
This achieving goal of the government of tiger populated countries is famously known as the “Tx2” goal. Here, ‘T’ is for Tiger and ‘x2’ is for doubling of the wild tiger numbers.
In the last century, there is a rapid decrease in the numbers of tigers.
So this summit takes a serious conservational step for the tigers to maintain the food-chain and also the ecosystem.
Things to Know about Tigers:
Tiger is basically a carnivorous animal and is the top of the food chain. Scientific classification of the tiger is given below in the table.
You can check it. There are variety of species of tiger are present with 9 subspecies. They are,
1. Panthera Tigris tigris
This variety of tiger is otherwise known as the Royal Indian/Bengal tiger.
It is found in Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, and India has the highest numbers of this tiger comparing with other countries.
Usually, the color of these Bengal tigers is orange but we rarely found some are white cream in color due to the recessive mutant of this race.
2. Panthera Tigris altaica
It is also known as the Amur/Siberian tiger or southeast china tiger. This is the largest variety of tiger.
The Siberian tiger is a population of Panthera tigris tigris native to the Russian Far East and Northeast China, and possibly North Korea.
The Siberian tiger is genetically close to the Caspian tiger of Central and Western Asia.
3. Panthera Tigris jacksoni
It is found in peninsular Malaysia and southern & central part of it. So, it is called as Malayan tiger.
It is listed in IUCN (international union for conservation of nature and natural resources) Red list in 2015 as critically endangered.
4. Panthera Tigris amoyensis
It is native to southern and central china and is known as south china tiger or Xiamen tiger. It is also an endangered animal.
5. Panthera Tigris corbetti
This variety of tiger found in south east Asia region. Population of this variety also appears in Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia etc.
It is also listed as endangered, as its population is decreasing day by day.
6. Panthera Tigris sumatrae
This is known as sumatran tiger and is listed in 2008 as critically endangered by IUCN (international union for conservation of nature and natural resources) red list. It is only found in the sumatra’s Indonesian island.
The rest of the three sub- species were already extinct those are,
7. Panthera Tigris virgata (Caspian tiger)
8. Panthera Tigris balica (Bali tiger)
9. Panthera Tigris sondaica (Javan tiger)
Food and feeding habit of Tigers:
Tigers are solitary animals having permanent and extensive residential range.
This provide help to males to get several females for breeding, and the females for the protection of her cubs and for getting enough food.
Wild tigers wander around the boundary they like at least once a day. They take rest during the day time in warm shelter under thick plants.
They can not tolerate heat and are nocturnal. They move for hunting at morning time, in the evening or during night time.
As they are carnivores, they eat the meat of wild beast, wild boar and many species of deer.
It is a solitary hunter and go for hunting only when it is hungry. It observes the activities of the respective prey to get a chance for hunting, by hunting aside.
Then suddenly attacks with the help of powerful bite, in the neck region of the prey until the prey is killed.
To fill hunger peacefully it drags the prey in a suitable place and after satisfaction, it left there. At last, it takes rest and stores energy for next hunting.
Breeding: Tiger Day 2020
Tigers are protogynous (i.e. the ovaries mature earlier than the testes). A tiger makes many tigresses in his territory.
Tiger attracted towards tigress’s courtship tactics. Coitus is carried out a number of separate bouts of about 30 seconds each, over a period of one day & one night at about 10 to 20 minutes interval.
After completing the gestation period of 15 to 16 weeks, tigress gives birth to 2-3 cubs in a single litter (i.e. the young produced at one time).
The India government has launched the “Project Tiger” in 1973 to protect and preserve the royal Bengal tigers. Successfully it is increasing the number of tigers and achieving the goal of its project.
The tiger census of 2010 released by National Tiger Conservation Authority is about 1411, and in 2014 it raises up to 2226.
So, India is very close to achieving the ‘Tx2’ goal. Till now the total number of tigers is approximately 2966 according to the current news.
Threats to tigers includes:
- Most declining tiger populations are threatened primarily by habitat loss and fragmentation, poaching and declining prey base and human-tiger conflict.
- Loss of habitat and prey. Loss of natural home includes so many factors like deforestation, natural calamities, over exploitation of nature & natural resources.
- Hunting, poaching and illegal trade of its components.
- Tiger-man conflict. The nature of the tiger and Man means that wherever the homes of both meet or overlap, there is conflict. People compete with the tiger for space and food. Such encounters result in the death of livestock or, in rare but extreme cases, humans.
- Epidemic disease like tuberculosis, feline panleukopenia cause to the fall of tiger population.
- Lack of protection of tigers, Habitat loss and fragmentation etc.
Quotes: International Tiger Day
1. “Oddly enough, I’m not a particularly judgmental person. I just don’t have a lot of filtering when I’m in ‘tiger mother’ mode. I say what comes into my head.”- Amy Chua, author of “Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother”
2. “When a man wants to murder a tiger he calls it sport; when a tiger wants to murder him he calls it ferocity.” – George Bernard Shaw
3. “The tiger springs in the new year. Us he devours.” – TS Eliot
4. “Wooing the press is an exercise roughly akin to picnicking with a tiger. You might enjoy the meal, but the tiger always eats last.” – Maureen Dowd, journalist.
Source: Brainy Quote.
5. “Tiger is a symbol of Beauty, Bravery, Strength and Nationality. So Save the Tiger, Save the Nation’s Pride.”
6. “Let us keep the tigers in jungles & not in history, save tigers.”
7. “Look at the tigers mighty and strong, killing them for their fur is very wrong.”
8. “There’s a Tiger out there who thinks you’re terrific!”
9. “Use only cameras to shoot the tiger, not the gun.”
10. “Save the Tigers before they are silenced forever.” – Reshu
11. “Mighty tigers hear them roar, for they may be no more.” – Reshu
Summary: International Tiger Day
We all need to know about the importance of tigers for the proper functioning of the ecosystem.
If the number of predators like a tiger will decrease, there will be a rapid increase of consumers or herbivores by disturbing food chain.
It will be an imbalance in nature and is hard to repair. So it depends upon us and it is in our had to protect their life from the loss.
All the organizations are doing their duty successfully to save tigers. But we should take part in awaking people about the importance of this day.
In this lock-down situation, spread news, pictures posters in social media and celebrate this day with #save tigers and #InternationalTigerDay.
To read more like this on awareness day, then click here. Thanks for reading.