Annual tiger census starts in the Far East

Annual tiger census starts in the Far East

24 December 2012

Hunting specialists, scientists and specialists from public environmental institutions have started the annual census of Amur tigers in the Far East.


The census is conducted in 16 sample areas in the Primorye and Khabarovsk territories in the winter and is divided into two phases, one held in December and the other in February. In Primorye, researchers will cover some 250 tracks, observing over 23 square kilometres, which is 15-18% of the total area of the tiger's habitat.


The census will record the number of tigers that have left the boundaries of their typical habitat. With the help of the tigers' traces, the specialists will identify the species, determine the age and the gender and the number of tiger cubs born this year. This data together with other information about the tigers, their prey and rival predators will reflect the general trends in the development of the tiger population in the interim between the global tiger census that is held once every ten years.


In the last couple of years, the methods developed as part of the programme to research the Amur tiger in Russia's Far East, have helped in identifying specific animals and have provided more precise information on the state of the tiger population. The Russian Geographical Society provides financial support for this programme.


The system of monitoring tigers dates back to 1998. It was worked out by specialists from the Far Eastern branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Russian National Research Institute of Hunting and Animal Breeding and environmental organizations. Five sample areas are located in the Khabarovsk Territory and eleven in Primorye. Five sample areas belong to the administration of the federal specially protected natural areas, nine sample areas are located in hunting areas and two in adjoining border areas.