onsdag 23. november 2011

The Siberian Tiger

Siberian (or Amur) tigers are the world's largest cats. They live primarily in eastern Russia's birch forests, though some exist in China and North Korea. There are an estimated 400 to 500 Siberian tigers living in the wild, and recent studies suggest that these numbers are stable.

Over the last hundred years, hunting and forest destruction have reduced overall tiger populations from hundreds of thousands to perhaps 3,000 to 5,000. Tigers are hunted as trophies and also for body parts that are used in traditional Chinese medicine.

The problem is that more than 90% of the population occurs in the Sikhote Alin mountain region, and there is little movement of tigers across the development corridor, which separates this sub-population from the much smaller sub-population found in southwest Primorye province.
The winter of 2006-2007 was marked by heavy poaching. Poaching of tigers and their wild prey species is considered to be driving the decline, although heavy snows in the winter of 2009 could have affected the data.

During the civil war in Russia both white and red armies based in Vladivostok nearly wiped out the local Siberian tigers.Legal tiger hunting within the Soviet Union would continue until 1947 when it was officially prohibited. In the mid 1980s, it was estimated that the Siberian tiger population consisted of approximately 250 animals. 

Sources ( mainly copied)

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