July 29th is International Tiger Day, an annual worldwide celebration of tigers! While we celebrate the world’s largest cat, International Tiger Day is also a day to raise awareness of the urgent plight of tigers. Tigers once roamed the entire continent of Asia, but with human expansion they have lost over 96% of their original range. They now survive in small, isolated pockets of forest, where they are vulnerable to poaching and inbreeding. Allof the tiger subspecies have been have been classified as either by the Endangered or Critically Endangered by the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature). Poaching, habitat loss and habitat degradation are causing global tiger populations to plummet. Today, less than 4,000 tigers remain worldwide.
The Indochinese tiger, native to Cambodia, has recently been declared functionally extinct in the country. Fortunately, Cambodia is committed to conserving tigers in the region and has launched the Cambodia Tiger Action Plan (CTAP) as part of Tx2, a global initiative to double the number of tigers worldwide by 2022. Two potential tiger reintroduction locations have been identified: the Cardamom Rainforest Landscape, Koh Kong and the Eastern Plains Landscape, Mondulkiri. Thanks to Wildlife Alliance’s commitment to Direct Protection of Forests and Wildlife, and our unique hands-on and effective approach to protected area management and law enforcement, the pristine and extensive forests of the Cardamom Rainforest Landscape are an ideal location for tiger reintroduction.
Wildlife Alliance is working with all stakeholders – government, communities, and global conservation experts – to move tiger reintroduction plans forward and ensure that Cambodia makes a contribution to the global goal of doubling wild tiger numbers.
Globally, the plight of the tiger remains a pressing issue, and we are on the verge of losing this beautiful and iconic species. Get involved this Global Tiger Day by supporting our protection of a potential reintroduction site, our efforts to crack down on the wildlife trade, or joining the conversation on social media.