How Kerala Forests Have Hit Century With Camera Trapped Tiger Census

Posted on June 3, 2013 in Environment

By Anshul Srivastava:

The lush-green dense forests of Kerala are replete with the rich wildlife and serene beauty that allures people from all the major corners of the world. The forests have a bountiful diversity of animals such as tigers, elephants, jackals, leopards, bison, foxes and so on. The perfect amalgamation of flora and fauna never fails to fascinate visitors.

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The enchanting Kerala forests have added another feather in their cap by increasing its tigers count from 70 to 100. In order to count the numbers of tigers a camera trapping method was used, which is considered as a very reliable method to keep a tab on the population of tigers. This tremendous feat has been achieved mainly due to the exceptional efforts undertaken by the government for the security of wildlife. So, how did the population of the tigers in the forests increased over the years? Let us explore some reasons:

Western Ghats Forests
The phenomenal increase in the numbers of tigers is mainly because of the dense forests in the region of Western Ghats. The Western Ghats forests spread quite easily into the states of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Due to the very large expansion of the forests, the animals sometimes travel from one place to another scouting for food and home.

  • Excellent Funding by the States and Centre

It can be rightly said without a doubt that ample funds are required to save the tigers and various animals found in the forest area of Kerala. Previously, because of the shortage of money, it was a very challenging task for the forest officials to safeguard animals. The state and the central government after taking into the account this particular problem took swift action by allocation the necessary funds for the protection of wildlife in the jungles.

  • Using Camera Trapping for Tiger census

For the first time a camera trapping technology was used for the purpose of counting and monitoring the population of tigers. At present this particular technology is being used in the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. The camera trapping census is considered to be a very efficient method for estimation of tiger population.

The camera traps, basically come attached with an electronic switch and a camera. With the help of the traps, the movement of the tigers and the various other wildlife creatures are recorded that walk in front of the camera. The natural stripes of all the tigers are considered to be very unique and different. By using the photographs, the stripes of every individual tiger are compared, thus making the task of counting the tigers relatively easy and reliable.

Therefore, it is a crystal-clear fact that  excellent protection measures undertaken by the government in Kerala forests have certainly paid rich dividends in the form of increase in tiger population. This has certainly brought a huge cheer and smile on the faces of many people and wildlife enthusiasts who are leaving no stone unturned to bring back the tigers from the verge of extinction.

hoto Credit: digitalART2 via Compfight cc

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