Amur Tiger Seeks Help from Humans
In the Russian Far East Primorye, a young Amur tiger left the forest with an illegal poachers trap grasping his paw. The weakened tiger was crying out from the pain as he entered the village. The tiger appeared to be asking for help as he walked from place to place and didn’t seem interested in returning to the forest.
Paw Caught in a Trap
Local hunters, came to the aid of the young male, thought to be about one year of age, by calling on the police and forest rangers for their assistance. The tiger was humanely captured and the trap was successfully removed from his paw. Local experts think the tiger accidentally got caught in a trap set for a much smaller animal. The lure of the bait in the trap was too hard for the tiger to resist.
Get Well Soon!
A Moment of Silence for the Amur Tiger
I have something super serious to tell you. Eight Amur tiger skins have been seized from a citizen in the town of
Arseniev in the Russian Far East. Wildlife experts think the poachers killed the entire tiger family including two cubs estimated to be 1-2 months old.
The deaths of these tigers is a crushing blow to wild tiger conservation. There are only an estimated 8-10 adult Amur tigers living in the Lazovsky Nature Reserve, one of the largest nature reserves in the Primorye, the far south-eastern edge of Russia.
Amur Tiger Conservation Efforts
The Amur tiger is in a battle against extinction. Scientists are worried that even though there are around 500 Amur tigers surviving in the wild, low genetic diversity is making the subspecies vulnerable to disease. In fact the effective population was estimated at just 14 individuals remaining. The troublesome low effective population size dims the hope for the recovery of the big cat. To lose 8 healthy tigers, an entire family, to poachers is devastating.
It is important to understand there are many people in the Russian Far East that are protective of the Amur tiger (Panthera tigris altaica), you might know this tiger better by the name Siberian tiger. This tiger subspecies is listed as critically endangered in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and in the Red Books of the Russian Federation. Following the International Tiger Forum in St. Petersburg in 2010 the Russian Government began allocating money to conserve Amur tigers in protected areas. But they are facing a formidable opponent and that is the demand for tiger skins and tiger derivatives, such as bones and other parts for tiger wine, soups and traditional medicinal practices. As the tiger population dwindles, the price of tiger parts goes up because of scarcity.
Younger Generation is Driving the Illegal Trade!
Today, I needed to unleash some of my pent up energy after soaking up a lot of sunshine on my Cat Power Tower. I decided to spend a little time on my iPad. I started off playing Chase the Butterfly but soon grew tired. I thought I would rather use some of my creative energy painting. Here is a brief video of my creative process.
As you saw in the video, I began to imagine a beautiful and mighty Amur Tiger walking through a Korean Pine Forest of the Russian Far East. My creative energy took over and before I knew it, I had created, if I do say so myself, an accurate portrayal of the of the light, colors and imagery of a Tiger in the Taiga.
Here is my inspiration:
Born Free USA’s third annual Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week, June 20-24 was started with the goal of taking care of wild animals not just around the world but in your own back yards! Adam Roberts, executive vice president of Born Free USA, says the goal of Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week, is to get people to stop, think and take action.
Small steps can lead up to making a big difference. In my backyard, you might already know that we try our best to take care of Bossy Backyard Blue Jay and all of the birds that gather and live around our habitat. We provide food and water, and we have trees and shrubs for shelter. We are also super lucky to have squirrels, rabbits, opossum, white tail deer, the occasional raccoon and last winter there might even have been a bobcat track through our yard. We live in an area surrounded by neighbors that love wildlife as much as we do.
What isn’t so lucky is the wild tiger. There are more wild tigers in captivity in the United States than there are in the wild. Occupying a mere 6% of their original territory, the tiger faces the possibility of following the pug marks of the ghosts of the Balinese, Caspian and Javan subspecies into extinction. The South China subspecies is already extinct in the wild. The remaining, Amur (Siberian), Bengal, Indo-Chinese (including Malayan), and Sumatran subspecies only have an estimated 1000 breeding females in total.