::All-India Tiger Estimation 2018::
Tiger act as a symbol of the richness of the ecosystem, thus conservation of
tigers is necessary to protect the wilderness of the entire ecosystem.
Wilderness play an important role in providing the life support system in any
ecosystem. For the survival of the mankind it is necessary to preserve the
wilderness. Tigers constitute the topmost level in the heirarcy of the food
chain and they play a very important role in the ecosystem. Food chain are
generally inverted so harm to the topmost carnivores will adversely impact a
large number of species in the lower level. All the species in a food chain are
interlinked cornivores help in maintain the population which help in retaining
the population of grass and trees and later are the primary source of food for
entire food chain. Thus every specy including tiger has importance in the
ecosystem and importance of the specy increases if it is in the higher trophic
There are various reasons which provides a threat of Tiger protection.
Important among them are:
- Despite several measures taken by government poaching still continue.
- Due to continous reduction in forest land, habitat for Tiger has been
- Pray for the Tiger are also decreasing.
- Some of the Tigers live outside the protected area, there conservation
is extremely difficult.
For the protection of Tigers, the Government of India has taken a pioneering
initiative for conserving its national animal, the tiger, by launching the
‘Project Tiger’ in 1973. AT the begining Project Tiger covered only 8 Tiger
reserves and it has now expanded to 47. The tiger coservation is based upon a
core and buffer area strategy. The core areas are given more protection from
human interference. They are also provided with the legal backing as national
park or a sanctuary. The buffer or peripheral areas have mixture of land which
is forest as well as non forest. Important points in Project Tiger are:
- The Project Tiger aims to foster an exclusive tiger agenda in the core
areas of tiger reserves, with an inclusive people oriented agenda in the
- Project Tiger is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme of the Ministry of
Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
- The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has an overarching
supervisory / coordination role for Tiger conservation, performing functions
as provided in the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
The All-India Tiger Estimation, 2018 exercise promises not just to be
hi-tech, but will also be far more accurate and precise than ever before. The
phone application automatically records the track log of surveys and line
transects, as well as authenticates the recorded data on signs and animal
sightings with geo-tagged photographs. With increased camera trap density and
the use of android technology, estimates arrived at are likely to be more robust
– both in terms of accuracy and precision. This becomes evident from the fact
that compared to the exercise conducted in the year 2006, when 9, 700 cameras
were put up, the 2018 Estimation will use nearly 15, 000 cameras. It was also
pointed out that it is not possible to count the photograph of every tiger in
the camera trap.
The Tiger Estimation exercise is the world’s largest wildlife survey effort
in terms of coverage, intensity of sampling and quantum of camera trapping. An
amount of Rs. 10.22 crore will be invested by the Government in the fourth cycle
of All India Tiger Estimation. Financial assistance to the tune of Rs. 7 crore
will be provided to the States through the ongoing Centrally Sponsored Scheme of
India conducts the All India Tiger Estimation every four years. Three cycles
of the estimation have already been completed in 2006, 2010 and 2014. These
estimates showed estimates of 1, 411, 1, 706 and 2, 226 tigers respectively. The
methodology has remained the same in the three cycles in terms of concept, but
latest scientific developments in the field of animal abundance estimation have
been incorporated and the best available science to evaluate tiger status has
In 2014, over 70% of the estimated tiger population was through camera
trapping, where 1686 photographs of individual tigers had been obtained. The
remaining 30% of tigers were from areas that had tigers, but had not been camera
trapped and were estimated by using robust statistical models, where ecological
covariates of prey, habitat and human impact were used.
The Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 was amended in the year 2006. Since then,
the Government has taken several initiatives in the field of tiger conservation.
Tiger conservation was given statutory backing. The newly-created NTCA was
mandated to carry out estimation of population of tiger and its natural prey
species and assess status of their habitat.
The Tiger Task Force realized that a major lacuna in tiger conservation
was the absence of a credible, scientific national monitoring protocol that will
inform policy-makers and wildlife managers on –
- Spatial extent and the size of tiger population in India;
- Welfare factors in these and neighbouring habitat (prey status, human
pressure, other wildlife species, status and habitat conditions)
- Trends in the population and area occupied over time.
The national status assessment exercise provides details such as the size of
tiger population, extent, covariates of prey, co-predators, habitat and human
impact. It has been observed that tiger population in India has increased at an
average rate of about 5.8 per cent since the year 2006.