Sunday, April 26, 2009

Weekly Feline News

Here are the cat-related news for the past week..

From the leopards of Amur, the most endangered wild cats, to the tigers, the largest wild cats - concerns were raised recently by the World Wildlife Fund about the continued preservation of their habitat in Siberian Fareast after emergence of reports of rampant logging in the area. It appears that owing to the current global economic crisis, the demand for cedar pine trees found across tiger habitat in Primorsky has increased while the price of other wood types has fallen. This had led to a sudden rise in logging in territories reserved for conservation of Amur tigers. WWF has raided some illegal logging operations and thereafter suggested the imposition of a moratorium on the harvesting of these trees, that form the bulk of food for tiger's prey animals and also serve as a habitat for the rare leopards and the bears in the area. More here.

The news is otherwise good for tigers in India. A court has issued a notice to a mining company that was operating close to a critical tiger habitat, the Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve. The mining venture was said to be threatening an important forest corridor between the states of Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh. Hopefully the court will put to halt the mining and preserve this important corridor for wildlife. Full report here.

It is difficult to strike a balance for the administration in a growing economy such as India, between preservation of forests and pristine wildlife habitats, and development activities and exploitation of natural resources. Two very interesting articles this week reflect perspectives on the current state of tiger conservation in India, the future and what we can do to help. To read them go here and here.

Here's some interesting news about Bengal tigers. Two individual tigers in India have been given 'lifetime achievement awards' for being great ambassadors towards their species and for being good parents and having sired a number of cubs. The two particular tigers - B2 the big male tiger of Bandavgarh National Park and Machali the tigress of Ranthambore - are quite famous actually and have been featured in documentaries seen by millions of people across the world. They've also earned enormous amounts of revenue for the economy and the conservation efforts in India too. Like the two articles above, this one is a must-read. Go here.

Now to lions, and Africa, and here is another interesting article - about bushmeat industry in Africa and how the current trend of bushmeat consumption is going on there in Kenya. Widespread bushmeat consumption by locals is one of the biggest threats to large predators and their prey in the African continent. Read the article here.

And as always, for account of interactions between people and predators in Kenya's Masai Mara, and how conservationist are trying to limit it, you can go to the Predator Aware blog.

Back to India again, and the Asiatic Lions. Gujarat, the home state of Asiatic Lions has protested to the Supreme Court in India against relocation of some of its lions to the state of Madyha Pradesh in India. Madhya Pradesh has already spent millions on creation of a forest reserve for the lions, however Gujarat has been reluctant to part company with even a fraction of its lion population of over three hundred animals. This is despite the fact that the Gir Forest there in Gujarat has lions beyond its holding capacity and the lions are continuously venturing out of the reserve boundaries, coming into conflict with people. The government of Gujarat has taken a stance that it's unsafe to move lions to Madhya Pradesh owing to the presence of poachers and the tigers there, who might threaten the lions! Do you think it would be a good idea to move lions to the new sanctuary in Madhya Pradesh? To vote, go here. And to read more about this here.

And finally, the Cheetah Conservation Fund in Namibia has released its annual report of progress. Cheetah Conservation Fund is a non-profit charitable organization that has been working tirelessly towards the conservation of cheetahs in Namibia, the country with the highest population of cheetahs in the world, for the past two decades. To read their report of conservation efforts in 2008 and the past few years, and to gain some perspective on the conservation of cheetahs in general, go here.

That's all for this week. Hope you all have a great next seven days. See you all coming Sunday. Ciao :)


Liz said...

Hi Omer

Great news on the tigers. I've just had a brief read at this stage but will spend the next couple of days reading all this interesting news you've put up. By the way the guy who does the George Adamson website gave you one very big comment. I read your article that you did on The Father of Lions - fantastic it made my week.

Purrs and hugs to you

Liz said...

I meant to say Compliment not comment (on the George Adamson website guys' comment) he was so thrilled.

BeadedTail said...

I always like to see the words "good" when talking about the news about tigers! Thanks for another news filled week about cats!

Black Cat said...

Dearest Omer, great post as always! I will have to come back to read the links, I'm behind as usual. Luvsya :) xxx

Anita said...

Thanks for your information and work.

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Unknown said...

Incredible news on the tigers. I've recently had a brief perused at this stage yet will spend the following couple of days perusing such a lot of intriguing news you've set up. Also check out this article I read your article that you did on The Father of Lions - awesome it made my week.

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