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Tigers4Ever

Tigers4Ever is a small charity which has been giving wild tigers a wild future since 2010.

tigers4ever.org/ Fundraise for us
Contactus@Tigers4Ever.org

07706951927

Registered charity no. 1160528

Member since June 2020

Latest News

New Year – Year of the Tiger

New Year – Year of the Tiger

We were absolutely blown away by the incredible support from our supporters from Giving Tuesday (30 November 2021) until the end of 2021. Their generosity will help us to make increased patrolling the new standard in 2022, which we think it is a fitting tribute for the Year of the Tiger. Thank you so very much to everyone, who has helped with donations and purchases, for making this possible.

In India, which is home to two thirds of the world’s last remaining wild tigers, statistics from the NTCA (National Tiger Conservation Authority – formerly Project Tiger) showed that wild tiger deaths in India alone had risen to the highest level for ten years. Poaching gangs across India have maximised the chance during the COVID lock-downs to increase their illicit activities. Even with our patrols tripled, poachers struck in Bandhavgarh killing the Banvai female and dumping her carcass in an open well at the end of the monsoon. It was soul destroying to know that despite our significant efforts to comb the forest for snares and traps so wild tigers can walk freely, one such snare had gone under the radar and claimed the life of a precious wild tiger. That is why we decided at our last Board of Trustees meeting just a few days ago that increased patrolling will have to be the new standard if we are to prevent this happening again. A decision we couldn’t have taken without your generosity, so thank you again.

Tiger Census

Over the last few months of 2021, the all India Tiger census was being carried out across the 51 protected areas for wild tigers. Known corridors for tiger movement, other sanctuaries and forests where wild tigers are known to roam were also combed by foot patrollers looking for wild tigers and evidence of their territories. Camera traps were set along geographical transect lines to monitor not just how many different tigers but to capture their images for future identification too. Scat and hair samples, from trees used as tiger scratch posts, are also collected as part of the identification process too. It is important to ensure that the same tiger isn’t counted multiple times as wild tigers have very large territories with male wild tigers known to patrol and scent mark around 7300 km (4536 miles) around their territory in a year! Dependent on the availability of prey and water, wild tiger territories can vary from 20 sq. km (7.7 sq. miles) in size to 400 sq. km (154.5 sq. miles), which covers a lot of camera traps and trees!

The hard work continues as the collected data seeks to eliminate duplicates and confirm the current numbers of wild tigers inside and outside the protected areas. We are hopeful, that despite an increase in Tiger-Tiger conflict and human-tiger conflict during the pandemic, that the tiger census will confirm at least the same number of wild tigers in Bandhavgarh as in the 2018 Tiger census. You may wonder why we don’t think that the number will increase massively again as it did last time. With 42 cubs born during the pandemic and improved cub mortality rates since the introduction of our Anti-Poaching patrols in July 2015, it’s not an unreasonable assumption, but Bandhavgarh is wild tiger territory not a sanctuary or zoo, so the tigers are free to come and go as they choose. Young adult male tigers are usually kicked out of their mother and father’s territories as they reach 3 years old, whilst some hang around on the fringes of their former home with siblings or even alone, others make the bold decision to find a new territory to call home. For some young males, this nomadic behaviour may continue for 2 or more years dependent on many factors including how many females are around, are there other stronger males to resist their challenge and is there enough prey to eat.

The Tiger Census also counts the numbers of prey animals in each transect to help determine the carrying capacity of the area. At the last Tiger Census in 2018, the number of wild tigers in Bandhavgarh was significantly higher than the predicted carrying capacity of the 2014 census. We have worked really hard since 2018 to increase the number of permanent wildlife waterholes in Bandhavgarh so that prey numbers will increase, wild tigers will need smaller territories and conflict situations can be avoided. As I write this project report, work is almost complete which will provide year-round permanent water resources at two more locations bringing the total number of Tigers4Ever waterholes to eleven and supporting more than 63 wild tigers. We also hope to create at least one more waterhole for wild tigers, before the drought season takes hold, subject to raising another £3000 (US$4200) to fund the work. https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/water-for-bandhavgarhs-tigers/

Year of the Tiger

You have probably seen a lot in the news recently about 2022 being the Lunar Year of the Tiger. You may also recall in the last Year of the Tiger in 2010, the thirteen tiger nations pledged to double their wild tiger numbers by 2022. Back in 2010, the global wild tiger population was estimated at 3200 and by 2018 this had increased to 3900, quite some way short of the proposed 6400 which had been pledged in 2010. In 2010, India had more than 1411 wild tigers (2008 census results) so when it reported that this had increased to 2967 wild tigers in 2018 there was a sense of achievement against the 2022 target. What it is important to know is that the 2014 census reported 1785 wild tigers in India and that prior to 2010 cubs and sub-adult tigers were not counted in the census data.

The more recent census information has counted wild tigers over 12 months old in the census data, thus the results for 2022 (from the 2021 count) will be the ones to provide the best measure. One thing which we can be certain of is that in 2010 the tiger census in Bandhavgarh recorded just 37 wild tigers, and since we launched our Anti-Poaching Patrols in July 2015, wild tiger deaths due poaching and retaliatory poisoning have reduced by 98%. The combination of our efforts and improvement cub mortality saw wild tiger numbers reach an estimated 126 in Bandhavgarh in 2018, which is three times the number back in 2010, but also reflects different counting methods. So we honestly believe that our work has ensured that the number of wild tigers in Bandhavgarh has doubled (and a bit more) since the last Year of the Tiger in 2010, the challenge for us now is making sure these increases can be sustained and that future generations have suitable safe habitat and enough prey. For this reason we will be focusing our efforts on providing as many new permanent wildlife waterholes as we can throughout 2022 (https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/water-for-bandhavgarhs-tigers/) and looking to start our forest restoration initiative with a new project for tree planting too. This doesn’t mean that we won’t be prioritising keeping wild tigers safe, quite the opposite in fact as our waterhole and tree planting projects seek to reduce the number of wild tigers killed in territorial conflicts.

The Next Tiger Challenge

The fantastic support we received at the end of 2021 means that our concerns of the last two years that we wouldn’t have enough funds to keep the increased patrolling going for as long as is necessary, have reduced. We are not taking the situation for granted though, keeping the increased patrolling going has tripled our monthly patrolling costs, such that we now need to raise more than £1800 (US$2520) each month to maintain the status quo. For this reason we have decided to centralise our fundraising efforts on our original Anti-Poaching Patrols project https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/saving-bandhavgarhs-wild-tigers/ and we’re asking those of you who are kind enough to donate to our other anti-poaching patrols project each month to consider setting up a new monthly donation to our main project at: https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/saving-bandhavgarhs-wild-tigers/?show=recurring where you will be able to continue your fantastic support. As an added bonus, when you set up a new monthly donation GlobalGiving will add a 100% bonus in matched funds if you keep your regular support in place for at least four months. This is great because your donation of £20 (US$28) per month will be worth £100 (US$140) to our conservation efforts for wild tigers at the end of month 4.

We hope that our old: https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/protect-bandhavgarhs-tigers-from-poachers/ will be fully funded by Easter 2022, which would be great because we’ll be able to plan our monsoon patrolling early. On a sad note, it means that our project update reports may reduce from 8 to 4+ per year. On a positive note, it means that we will be keeping wild tigers safe from poachers’ snares and would be poisoners with the highest level of protection possible over the next two months and beyond.

Should you wish to help us achieve our goal sooner that would be wonderful of course. As you already know, our patrollers cover vast amounts of tiger territory on their daily patrols (on average around 125 km (78 miles) per day) in an area which is roughly the size of Wales (UK) or two thirds the size of the State of New Jersey (USA), so we can always make good use of any donations we receive to benefit the wild tigers via https://goto.gg/34704 before this project closes.

You are Making the Difference

Right now, thanks to your tremendous support we’re able to protect wild tigers in an extra 1000 km (624 miles) every month compared to our previous standard patrolling (back in June 2020). This additional patrolling allows us more time to search for snares; traps and signs of would be poisoners around forest areas where human encroachment is rife; and around the periphery of villages where crop raiding and livestock killing is rife. Increased patrolling also helps us to curb the dangerous encroachment into wild tigers’ territories, which continues to be a big problem, and allows us to provide safety advice for those trying to protect their crops and livestock from wandering elephants and tigers respectively.

With 42 new tiger cubs born since the start of the pandemic, we have many more wild tigers to keep safe now. So we still need your help. Your gift today, however large or small will always make a huge difference to the survival prospects of Bandhavgarh’s wild tigers:

• A gift of £20 ($28) will help us to pay a patrolling team for a day

• A gift of £25 ($36) will provide hot nutritious meals for a patrolling team whilst they are on duty for a day

• A gift of £38 ($54) will ensure that we can transport a team of anti-poaching patrollers to a remote location for a day’s patrolling

• A gift of £100 ($142) will ensure that a team of patrollers can cover 125km (78 miles) of wild tiger territory in a day

• A monthly gift of £10 (US$14) per month will help us to pay an anti-poaching patroller for 35 days per year.

Without our help, we know that more wild tigers will die; and more humans will be mauled or killed due to encroachment or human-tiger conflict. Sadly, with every human life lost comes another threat to the wild tiger’s survival in the form of retaliation; thus we must protect both if we are to ensure that wild tigers can have a wild future.

Please don’t hesitate if you can help, your donation can be the difference between life and death for a wild tiger, as it helps to increase our patrolling when and where it is most needed. Every tiger and every tiger cub counts. Thank you for making our fight against poachers, the changing climate and human-animal conflict possible. (https://goto.gg/34704).

Tiger Census and Elephants

Tiger Census and Elephants

The incredible support of our followers over the last 2 years has ensured that we could keep our anti-poaching patrols at triple standard patrolling levels until the end of 2021, thank you. It has been vital as wild tiger poaching has increased across India and Bandhavgarh can be targeted at any time as its increase in wild tiger numbers is well documented. Bandhavgarh is still suffering from the economic impact of the pandemic, as many other parts of India and beyond are. We’re well aware that many of the poachers who lay the snares and traps are just poor people desperate to feed themselves and their families, they are not the ring leaders who facilitate the trade in wild tiger body parts nor are they the ones making big bucks from their heinous acts. That’s why triple patrolling which enables us to protect an extra 1000km (624 miles) per month of wild tiger territory is so important. Without your support, this would be impossible, so thank you on behalf of the wild tigers we’re keeping safe.

Tiger Census

It only seems like yesterday when we broke the news that wild tigers in Bandhavgarh had more than doubled since we started our anti-poaching patrols in July 2015, but it’s actually more than three years since that count confirmed what we had hoped to achieve. Right now the 2021 wild tiger census is underway across the whole of India and Bandhavgarh is no exception. We are not anticipating numbers to double again, but we are hoping for another increase when the count results are in. After all 42 cubs were born during the pandemic lockdown and cub mortality has dramatically improved as we have reduced the number of retaliatory poisonings of wild tigers by 97.5% (in the last 6.5 years.

We know that 2022 is the Chinese year of the Tiger, a date set by all 13 tiger countries to double the number of wild tigers before at a country and at a global level. The bad news is that not all countries have seen their wild tiger numbers increase, in some cases where poaching is rife, wild tiger numbers have dramatically fallen, whilst numbers have significantly increased in both India and Nepal. It is unlikely sadly, that the target of 6400 wild tigers globally will be achieved by the 2022 target, and the economic impact pandemic won’t have helped. Nonetheless we eagerly await news of the expected increases in wild tiger numbers in India, and in Bandhavgarh particularly.

Winter Challenges

The weather in Bandhavgarh continues to present new challenges for our patrollers, as early morning mists and fog reduce visibility and make wild animal attacks more likely. Just a few days ago we received a report of a tiger suddenly appearing in the road in front of a young boy and girl on a motorised scooter. The huge male tiger growled aggressively at the youths and it took the youngsters all their courage to stay on board the scooter and make their escape. Imagine how dangerous such a situation could be for our patrollers on foot in the forest. Patroller safety is always at the forefront of our minds, which is why training both on the job and for emergency situations is an integral part of what we do. Some people ask us why we need fuel and transport for our anti-poaching patrols and there are two main reasons why. Firstly, our patrollers cover vast amounts of tiger territory on their daily patrols (on average around 125 km (78 miles) per day) and they are covering an area which is roughly the size of the country Wales (UK) or two thirds the size of the State of New Jersey in the USA, so they need to get to and from their foot patrolling start or finish points. The second reason is patroller safety: there are many possible emergency situations in the forest: freak weather; snake bites; scorpion stings; bites or attacks by other animals or even people; to name but a few, so we always have a vehicle on hand with an agreed rendezvous point or alternative escape point in case of need. It costs £38 (US$54) to provide such a vehicle for each day of patrolling, but enables us to transport a team of Tigers4Ever patrollers and Forest Department Rangers who accompany our patrols, as required. (https://goto.gg/28767).

The fog and mist may conceal a trap or snare intended for a tiger or other wild animal, so our patrollers must take extra care, in these conditions, as such devices are capable of severing a patroller’s foot, too. At such times and during night patrolling, the sturdy wooden canes provided for each of our patrollers are essential equipment for checking ahead for snares or traps, and keeping their feet safe. Even though the current Tiger Census is maximising the use of technology including camera traps; technology cannot disarm a poacher’s snare or trap set for a tiger, nor can it replace those dedicated men and women who risk their lives to keep wild tigers safe.

The colder winter season always brings some different challenges for our anti-poaching patrols and this winter is no exception with the poaching risk still high. Tiger-tiger conflict continues to increase as sub-adult male tigers leave their mothers and challenge each other and older male tigers for territorial rights. This increases the risk of encounters with aggressive or injured tigers, so again our patrollers must be alert to these extra dangers.

In recent years, winter has been bitterly cold in Bandhavgarh, with this in mind we equipped our patrollers with new sturdy boots, thick socks and warm jackets to aid their patrolling in the icy cold conditions. When the daytime temperatures can reach 25°C (77°F) but plummet close to 0°C (32°F) at night, in the jungles of India, food and drink plays a vital role in maintaining our patrols. The wild animals adapt to these colder temperatures which alters their daily routines and increases the chances of serendipitous wildlife encounters whilst on patrol. We always ensure that all our patrollers get three warm nutritious meals each whilst they are on duty, to help them fight off the cold and maintain their strength during foot patrolling, of wild tiger habitat in freezing conditions. Providing a team of patrollers with hot food and drinks costs as little as £25 (US$36) for a day, but ensures that they are able to keep at least 125 km (78 miles) of wild tiger territory safe. (https://goto.gg/28767).

As always, our anti-poaching patrols are working flat out to mitigate the risks caused by increased human encroachment levels, in Bandhavgarh, and the increases in poaching activity in both the neighbouring states and Madhya Pradesh. We don’t always get it right as the poaching incident in September this year has shown, but we always try to learn from our mistakes and improve where we can. We hope we can rely on your continued loyal support. (https://goto.gg/28767).

Wild Elephants

One of the biggest challenges for our anti-poaching patrols in recent months is the ever increasing human-animal conflict due to damage caused by and attacks on humans by the wild elephants, which arrived from Chhattisgarh and made Bandhavgarh their home. Our patrollers always pride themselves on being able to give good safety advice to the villagers they encounter in the forest, which helps to keep both animals and humans safe; but the wild elephants cause most trouble by entering the villages, destroying crops and attacking the humans who try to save their livelihood. So our patrollers have to help the villagers with other types of advice, in addition to personal safety advice, including the use of deterrents to reduce the risk of crop raiding/destruction by the wild elephants.

To date there haven’t been any retaliatory attacks or traps set for the wild elephants, but we must always be mindful of the possibility of this changing as a population already devastated by the economic impact of COVID19 suffers further hardship due to human-wildlife conflict. The only way we can address these risks and those of poaching or retaliatory poisoning is to keep patrolling increased until the risks subside. With this in mind, we hope to be able to maintain our anti-poaching patrols at a minimum of 2.5 times standard patrolling until at least the end of April 2022, when hopefully the current situation will begin to improve. (https://goto.gg/28767)

Making a Difference

Right now, thanks to your continued support and with tripled patrols, we’re covering an extra 1000 km (624 miles) per month of wild tiger territory when compared to the standard patrolling which we last did in June 2020. This gives us more time to search for snares; traps and signs of would be poisoners around forest areas where human encroachment is rife; and around the periphery of villages where crop raiding and livestock killing is rife. Increased patrolling helps us to curb the dangerous encroachment into wild tigers’ territories, which is still a huge problem, and allows us to provide safety advice for those trying to protect their crops and livestock from wandering elephants and tigers respectively.

With 42 new tiger cubs born since the start of the pandemic, we have many more wild tigers to keep safe now. So we still need your help. Your gift today, however large or small can make a huge difference as to whether Bandhavgarh’s wild tigers can survive these unprecedented threats:

• A gift of £20 ($28) will help us to pay a patrolling team for a day

• A gift of £25 ($36) will provide hot nutritious meals whilst they are on duty for a day

• A gift of £38 ($54) will ensure that we can transport a team of anti-poaching patrollers to a remote location for a day’s patrolling

• A gift of £100 ($142) will ensure that a team of patrollers can cover 125km (78 miles) of wild tiger territory in a day

• A monthly gift of £10 (US$14) per month will help us to pay an anti-poaching patroller for 35 days per year.

Making Your Gift Count Twice

Throughout 2022, your new online monthly gift of £10 (US$14) per month won’t just help us to pay an anti-poaching patroller protecting wild tigers for 35 days per year; it will also qualify for a 100% match bonus on the first donation amount if you keep donating for 4 months or longer. That means when you donate at £10 (US$14) monthly in month 4 we will receive an extra £10 (US$14) from GlobalGiving to help us save wild tigers. Thus there has never been a better time to start a new monthly donation than now. (https://www.globalgiving.org/projects/saving-bandhavgarhs-wild-tigers/?show=recurring).

Without our help, we know that more wild tigers will die; and more humans will be mauled or killed due to encroachment or human-tiger conflict. Sadly, with every human life lost comes another threat to the wild tiger’s survival in the form of retaliation; thus we must protect both if we are to ensure that wild tigers can have a wild future.

Please don’t hesitate if you can help, your donation can be the difference between life and death for a wild tiger, as it helps to increase our patrolling when it is most needed. Every tiger and every tiger cub counts. Thank you for making our fight against poachers, the changing climate and human-animal conflict possible. (https://goto.gg/28767).

Droughts, Fires and Elephants

Droughts, Fires and Elephants

Sometimes we wonder whether the droughts which are getting longer and harder for the wildlife of Bandhavgarh are wholly down to climate change or whether something else is in the mix. We wrote our last waterhole project update just five and a half weeks ago, but it seems like longer given what has happened since. If you read that report you’ll remember that wild elephants had damaged the solar-pump systems at two of our major waterhole sites leaving six of our wildlife waterholes dry. Work started on the repairs as soon as we had raised sufficient funds, we encountered an unexpected problem when we discovered that sand had entered the bore-well during the time when it wasn’t working, but we got an engineer on site to clear the bore-well before reconnecting the pump to the newly repaired solar system. As a result, the repairs took a little longer than anticipated but I’m pleased to say that there is water in all six of the waterholes filled by the two solar-pump systems and they are being used by tigers and other wild animals again. We’re in the process of completing the elephant proof fencing around the solar pump systems as I write.

Devastation and Restoration

If you follow our social media channels, you’ll also know about the forest fires which ravaged miles of wild tiger habitat for four days at the end of March and beginning of April. These fires have decimated the jungle destroying more than a third of the core forest and buffer forest too. Thousands of animals including wild tigers were displaced by the fires whilst others were too small or too vulnerable to flee, thus perishing in the flames and smoke. Many birds, reptiles, small mammals and insects were lost in the fires and the important roles which they played in seed dispersal and forest regeneration have been lost too. Since the fires were quashed, we’ve already received reports from our patrollers that two tigers and three leopards have died as a result of displacement and territorial conflict. One leopard was found in a fire affected area of forest, her fur blackened by smoke, she had succumbed to smoke inhalation. Many primate families have been displaced too. Rebuilding their forest homes will not happen overnight, but we plan to plant as many trees as we are able to do so we can restore the forest and provide food and habitat for the future generations of wildlife so dependent on the trees for life. By planting these trees, we’ll also be helping to address the issue of climate change too, as the saplings grow and remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere around them.

The Risk of Retaliatory Poisoning and Poaching is High

In the short term, more permanent wildlife waterholes are essential to prevent the inevitable tiger-tiger and human-animal conflict, which will arise due to the animals being displaced by the fires, from leading to more tiger deaths. We plan to start work within two weeks on installing a solar powered bore-well pump system at a large waterhole, which is currently being filled by water tankers, and is used by at least 42 elephants and 8 wild tigers plus countless other animals which have been displaced by the fires. If you have been following our newsletters for some time, you will know that tankers are a short-term solution because they habitualise wild tigers to large human vehicles thus making it easier for poachers to strike. However, one waterhole is nowhere near enough to reduce the conflict caused by the displaced wildlife encroaching on the territories of others and humans, so we need your help to be able to do at least one more waterhole, in addition to our current plan, before it is too late for the displaced wild tigers and other wildlife. With your help, we can raise enough money to start work at a second site which will benefit another 10 wild tigers including cubs too.

You Can Help us to Make a Huge Difference Right Now

Last week, we took part in GlobalGiving’s Climate Action Campaign and managed to raise just over half of the funds we need to start work on another waterhole in the next month. So now we need to raise another £1400 as quickly as possible so we can start work at the second site, saving the lives of at least 10 more wild tigers.

The Wild Elephants Have Done It Again

Last week, we also received news that the wild elephants have entered an area of the forest where they have never been before, due to their displacement by the recent forest fires, and have damaged the solar bore-well pump system at another of our waterhole sites! This damage could lead to two more waterholes running dry within the next fortnight, and leaving up to 12 tigers including cubs to enter the nearby villages in search of food and water! We were planning to erect elephant proof fencing at this site, as a precaution, once the repairs at the other sites were complete, but the elephants attacked before we could. It is likely that we will need to raise another £600 to complete these additional repairs too.

Many Challenges Ahead

We need to quadruple our efforts to keep wild tigers safe right now. We’re increasing our anti-poaching patrols to 2.5 times normal levels to address the increased risk of retaliatory poisoning and poaching of wild tigers. With your help, we will be able to complete our next waterhole project (and hopefully two) and the repairs needed where the elephants have damaged the solar pump system which currently fills two waterholes, which in turn would help us to keep at least 30 wild tigers safe.

Here are some of the ways your donations will help us to save wild tigers:

  • £120 will help to drill and line 12 metres (39 feet) of bore-well to access underground water;

- £75 can pay a team of workers to prepare a site for a new waterhole for wild tigers;

- £600 will enable us to repair the damaged solar-powered pump system and provide water for at least 12 wild tigers including cubs.

Every donation, no matter how large or small, helps us increase and protect the tiger population. Thank you on behalf of the wild tigers, which you are helping us to keep safe; and on behalf of the wider tiger community in Bandhavgarh, which benefits from providing equipment and labour for our waterhole projects; we couldn’t do this without you. Thanks to you, the tigers can live peacefully and those who live beside them can protect their livelihoods.