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Indian Tiger Park Now Tiger-Free 170

Posted by samzenpus
from the In-the-forests-of-the-night dept.
Panna National Park is now officially tiger free making it the second Indian tiger sanctuary to no longer have a tiger population. A census was conducted in the park, after authorities reported no Bengal Tiger sightings for a long time. Three years ago the park had a population of 24 tigers; however, none were found this year. Forest minister Rajendra Shukla is optimistic about the news and says, "Panna is our only park which has lost on this count. Three of state's reserve forests — Kanha, Bandhavgarh and Pench — have been adjudged among the best managed tiger reserves in the country."

*

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Indian Tiger Park Now Tiger-Free

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  • by Shag (3737) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:02PM (#28711953) Homepage

    How do you say "you're doing it wrong" in their local language?

  • What the fuck (Score:5, Insightful)

    by darkitecture (627408) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:09PM (#28712015)
    Your number one priority in a Tiger Park is... to maintain the tiger population. How the fuck do you let 24 tigers die in 36 months? Am I the only one that thinks that maybe after the first 12 months someone should have said, "wait a minute, we've got less tigers now than 12 months ago" and tried to figure out what the fuck was going wrong? How the fuck do you not notice anything is wrong in three years? Surely 24 tigers did not die in the past few months, right?

    Maybe I'm assuming too much; I was sick the day they taught tiger maintenance at tiger school.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      I saw an article about this about a year ago on TV. The tigers are being illegally captured for their skins and all. This has been going on for years, but the Indian government has kept denying it was happening, and did nothing about it. Now we have the result: a tiger-free tiger park.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:17PM (#28712073)

      1. Setup Tiger farm
      2. Economic crisis
      3. Sell to Chinese herbalist
      4. Profit.

    • Re:What the fuck (Score:5, Insightful)

      by erroneus (253617) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:20PM (#28712079) Homepage

      Poaching. Pure and simple. And these governments simply don't set their priorities on conserving endangered species. First they tend to enrich themselves, next they enrich their friends and associates, and if they EVER get done serving their own interests, the rest of what's left over goes to the people. They probably have no idea of what a budget committee is and no public involvement.

      • Re:What the fuck (Score:5, Insightful)

        by RsG (809189) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:40PM (#28712213)

        Poaching. Pure and simple. And these governments simply don't set their priorities on conserving endangered species.

        In addition to this, maintaining any kind of boundary around a tiger preserve is going to be a costly, manpower intensive operation. Likely the park didn't get that kind of staff or budget, and left the gate open, so to speak.

        Tigers are large. They're territorial apex predators. Each adult male needs lots and lots of room to himself, which means a park of a couple dozen is going to cover a wide territory. Plus, I doubt the park was at capacity with 24, so it probably was set aside with more room than the bare minimum for its now departed population.

        As a result, the park's borders are going to be long. Unless they have scads of park rangers, or whatever they're called in this case, they can't police the entirety of it. A poacher could get in unopposed. And given the rarity of the cats, poaching them is probably lucrative enough that they can bribe the, at most, one or two officials who might see them to look the other way.

        • by TiggertheMad (556308) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @02:27AM (#28713577) Homepage Journal
          The reason the poachers are bold is because nobody has done the math. 6 billion monkeys on the planet = common. ~3k tigers left on the planet = rare. Perhaps they should start demonstrating that they value tigers more than monkeys.

          Start guarding the park. anyone found inside for any reason without evidence of poaching will be killed on sight. People found poaching will be horribly public tortured for a month and then executed. Put severed heads on stakes around the borders of the park. Anyone found with tiger parts in the country will be immediately executed. Quite simply, they need to make entering the park seem like a automatic death sentence. Until they show a will to go farther than the poachers, they will lose and tigers will die.
          • by feepness (543479)

            Perhaps they should start demonstrating that they value tigers more than monkeys.

            Perhaps you should. Do you do anything besides bare necessities and supporting the tiger population? Do you do anything at all to support the tiger population?

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by Anonymous Coward

            Start guarding the park. anyone found inside for any reason without evidence of poaching will be killed on sight.

            As a positive side effect evolutionary pressure will get us rid of tourists with bad orientation and inability to read maps.

          • by JosKarith (757063) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @03:57AM (#28714029)
            No. What they should do is take all their weapons off them, then let them into the tiger park. Anyone who manages to kill and drag back a tiger bare-handed damn well deserves it, everyone else can be a play toy for teh big kitties...
            • Hence we got the whole 'tiger penis makes you verile' myth. Once upon a time, if you couldn't attract that girl you were hot for, the wise old man at the herbalist would say "My son, you must slay a tiger and consume soup made of its gonads and so you will win the heart of your lady." So he goes out and if through cunning or strength, kills the tiger, he makes the soup and gives her the pelt as a gift - she gets all hot for him because he just showed he could kill a tiger single-handed. If he was weak an
          • by drsquare (530038)

            So, there will then be two effects:

            1. The price of tigers goes through the roof.
            2. Poachers come in groups of several dozen with machine guns and grenade launchers in case anyone catches them.

        • Re:What the fuck (Score:4, Insightful)

          by mqduck (232646) <mqduck AT mqduck DOT net> on Thursday July 16, 2009 @07:51AM (#28715329)

          In addition to this, maintaining any kind of boundary around a tiger preserve is going to be a costly, manpower intensive operation.

          And if there's one this India lacks, it's manpower.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by RsG (809189)

            Right, but you don't want just any manpower here. I suspect being a park ranger in a tiger preserve is one of those jobs that requires more than just a week of on the job training to do. Particularly since it offers several ways to fuck up and die if you aren't careful and knowledgeable about the risks. Never mind that you have to pay the rangers enough that the poachers can't bribe them easily, so it's not a situation where you can throw legions of underpaid unskilled workers at the problem and expect i

            • I suspect being a park ranger in a tiger preserve is one of those jobs that requires more than just a week of on the job training to do.

              Particularly since it offers several ways to fuck up and die if you aren't careful and knowledgeable about the risks.

              I would be surprised of their current employees got much more than few weeks of apprenticeship.

              Never mind that you have to pay the rangers enough that the poachers can't bribe them easily, so it's not a situation where you can throw legions of underpaid unskilled workers at the problem and expect it to go away.

              Offer midsized rewards for blowing the whistle on other rangers that take bribes. Now the poachers have to bribe virtually every ranger they may encounter. Could get expensive if you have a legion of rangers.

        • by sjames (1099)

          The key is to offer hunters a much rarer prize. Declare poachers fair game. Once shot, having them stuffed and mounted is also legal (see a ranger to have your prey tagged as fair killed). The parks might be strapped for resources, but there's probably a few rich hunters willing to spend scads on the chance to one up everyone at the club once and for all.

      • Poaching. Pure and simple.

        This is the part I never understand. What on earth are they poaching the tigers for? Tigers are actually a fairly common animal in captivity.

        The only explanation I can come up with is that there are people who will pay money to their own, or own the skin of, one of the last $ANIMAL simply because it is the last, and for no other reason. I think there was a Star Trek episode about that.

        • Re:What the fuck (Score:5, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @11:09PM (#28712355)

          This is the part I never understand. What on earth are they poaching the tigers for?

          There is a multimillion dollar demand in Asian countries for, among other pieces of the tigers, the male tiger penis. It is seen in many Asian cultures as a sacred aphrodisiac. From personal experience with people who have actually contributed to the black market, the penis from the tiger bred in captivity is not as effective as one taken from the wild.

          Whether it is scientifically proven that it actually does anything at all is still uncertain. Personally I think it is a placebo, but to some cultures, a sacred placebo is preferable to the most effective medicine without religious/cultural connotations.

          • Well, since tigers are going extinct, it should be obvious that they don't have much use of said body part. Why not have someone else have it who puts more value on it?

            I'm just kidding, right. But it's still ironic. Maybe someone should tell them about rabbits.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Cheviot (248921)

            Ah. So idiots buy the dead tiger parts. That explains it.

          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            From personal experience with people who have actually contributed to the black market, the penis from the tiger bred in captivity is not as effective as one taken from the wild.

            From personal experience, since 0>0 is false, I still do not see the logic. You could give these guys shavings from a slashdotters toenails and they'd never be able to tell the difference.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by feepness (543479)

        First they tend to enrich themselves, next they enrich their friends and associates, and if they EVER get done serving their own interests, the rest of what's left over goes to the people.

        Well, at least we've exported American Democracy to one place in the world!

      • of this reserves managers, however I think India has a whole lot more to worry about than tigers. Yeah, while I sit in my comfy chair in an air conditioned building I can see where other people get off beating on countries for not doing what we want.

        The simple matter is, India at least is trying to protect the tigers. They also are trying to manage a large population of people who essentially live like they have for thousands of years and bring them into what many of us would still not consider acceptable

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by yogix (865930)
          There is no reason why the Government can't do both (maintain communal harmony and continue conservation efforts). You argument is along the lines of saying that India should not have a space program when it still can't feed its citizens. Yes, resources are required for each of these efforts - but the problem here is not lack of resources, it's the proper utilisation of the same.
      • by dkleinsc (563838)

        Hey, the Bush administration was over two years ago. Now it's Obama's problem ...

        Oh, wait, you were talking about India. Sorry, got a bit confused there for a second.

    • by Greyfox (87712)
      In a couple of minutes conflicting information on Wikipedia will show that the population of tigers in the tiger park has tripled in the last three months.

      Hey, it worked for the elephants!

    • by icebike (68054)

      Those people who were supposed to notice the reduction in tigers were missing as well.

      Their boss went out to find them, but he did not come back either.

      The senior administrator, the only employee left suggested the tigers moved on due to dwindling local food supply.

    • by Yvanhoe (564877)
      What is even worse is the argument that 3 other reserves are doing fine... It takes 3 years of poor management to have tigers disappear in a reserve, but you can then have good management during 100 years, they won't spontaneously reappear. Even if you bring new specimens, some biological variation has irremediably been lost.
    • by meerling (1487879)
      err... maintain the tiger population?
      We thought it was a themed hunting park.

      For a measly $10,000 you too can try to bag your own trophy tiger in a natural habitat...
      We still have spots left in our other 3 sites, but they're going fast, so contact your Extinction Hunting Tours Representative now before there all gone, forever...
    • by fantomas (94850)

      Obvious isn't it? "The Market will decide". This famous beastie called the market will decide what survives and what doesn't... and in India where there's a fair few people living on a dollar a day (say a hundred million or so people) then the idea of making a couple of thousand dollars for a days work hunting down and killing (poaching) a tiger seems quite attractive. What would you do for 6 years your current salary as a day's work?

      India - developing country - limited resources - can't fund its nature res

  • by lyinhart (1352173) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:12PM (#28712033)
    They weren't tracking these things electronically? The technology to track animals has existed for years and surely they would have access to electronic tags and GPS tracking devices.
    • by erroneus (253617) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:16PM (#28712067) Homepage

      They haven't deployed their multi-billion ID cards to the tigers yet....

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      If you've never worked on a wildlife preserve in a country like this, I guess it's hard to understand how understaffed and underfunded they are. I worked on a rhino preserve and these people were happy we brought boots, shovels and hoses for them to use. That's how little they had and how little funding they got. A man actually almost broke down into tears over a waterhose...imagine what they'd do with GPS.

      Just because technology exists does not mean it is available.

    • by khallow (566160)

      They weren't tracking these things electronically? The technology to track animals has existed for years and surely they would have access to electronic tags and GPS tracking devices.

      That would make it easier for the poachers to find the tigers. Not sure how it'd help the rangers though.

  • by Hansele (579672) * on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:16PM (#28712061)
    The asian manager of the reserve experienced massive penile growth over the past three years, and when asked about the secret of his "LONGevity", he credited "eating tiger pen^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hchinese herbs".
  • by Anonymous Coward

    They're....GOOOONNNNE!!

    (No, really, this is awful news)

  • by SanguineV (1197225) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:20PM (#28712091) Homepage
    I just set up a tiger park in my office - where do I apply for funding to look after the tigers?
    • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Actually, one of the best ways of preserving a species is making it profitable.
      http://books.google.com/books?id=zhXIXRiWPVYC

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by RsG (809189)

        In this particular case, "profit" is exactly what's driving them to extinction. Idiots demand bits of the tiger anatomy for "natural medicine" (read: impotency cures). Poachers supply them with their magical erection-granting kibbles & bits, slowly killing off the last of the species in the process, and making a tidy profit from their crimes.

  • by ls671 (1122017) * on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:28PM (#28712137) Homepage

    I haven't seen Tony the Tiger ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tony_the_Tiger [wikipedia.org] ) for a while on TV.

    Maybe he is from that Park and he has just vanished... ;-(

  • Duh (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:28PM (#28712139)

    Humans are destroying everything natural in this world. I just hope we destory things faster so that the Earth can wipe us out and then start over with some newer species that will hopefully not rip the planet apart the way we do. The way we handle everything natural (trees, animals, air, water, soil), we deserve to be added to the list of species that have gone extinct.

    What's really amusing is watching people try to rationalize why they deserve to exist. Right, because the species that chooses to force animals to mate in cages in order to be mass-slaughtered for food and clothing, the species that tears down forests to clear space for agrigulture and cities, the species whose members will literally do anything to "get ahead" of their neighbour in terms of money and power, the species who does nothing more than crave constant entertainment and shoveling their faces with as much food as they can get their fat hands on... yes, surely this is the species that deserves to dominate the planet.

    Of course, the most disgusting and saddening thing is that almost all people don't see anything wrong with us as a species. That somehow since we're just flesh and blood, everything we do is "natural". Yeah ok. Go back to drinking your Coke or Pepsi. It has absolutely no benefit to your body. But do it anyway, because it tastes good. That's all that matters.

    • by JosKarith (757063)
      I'm sorry - I've got mod points but have posted on this so can't Underrate your Troll mod. Can someone with mod points please mod parent up.
      • by ls671 (1122017) *

        Agreed, same here butI already posted too.

        I would have given parent +1 Insightful. I do not have to fully agree with him. Nevertheless, intelligent beings that refuse to question their way of living by looking at it from a different angle are not so bright in my humble opinion.

        The troll mod seems to make Slashdot audience looks like narrow-minded.

    • You go first (Score:4, Insightful)

      by greyhueofdoubt (1159527) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @08:03AM (#28715433) Homepage Journal

      You go first. Seriously. Go kill yourself and reduce the burden on the planet. Put your money where your mouth is. If you have kids, kill them too. And everyone you love. No? You don't want to? Then go fuck yourself. I'm sick of people like you who project their own feelings of shame and inadequacy on the entire population.

      Have a great day,
      -b

  • I'm so glad they got rid of the all the tiger that fouled up the place. It really brought down the whole place.
  • sad (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Magnificent animals.

    Meanwhile the human population of India goes exponential.

  • Bribes. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mail2345 (1201389) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:35PM (#28712185)
    The manager lets the poacher hunt the tigers for their own reasons, and gets a chunk of the profit. Everyone is happy except the conservationists and the tigers.
    • Re:Bribes. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by freedom_india (780002) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @03:49AM (#28713965) Homepage Journal

      Sadly that could be true.
      Unlike cops in countries like UK and USA, Indian cops don't get paid that much. Neither do they have great insurance coverages: a measly $2,500 is paid to their family if they are killed. Add to that weapons that are antiquated even by 1940s standards. So, you have deadly combination of corruption.
      Why would any fool throw away his life for a miserable tiger? So that his family suffers?
      No. It would be far better to make sure he's alive & safe & rich. So a tiger gets killed: so what?

    • by ls671 (1122017) *

      very possible indeed.

  • Reading the headline you'd think that was a good thing. Yay! Our park is now free from those nasty tigers!

    Hopefully the tigers just went elsewhere (other than to the great big tiger preserve in the sky). No, I did not read the article. :)
  • The Tiger (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mindbrane (1548037) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @10:53PM (#28712271) Journal
    Tiger! Tiger! burning bright In the forests of the night, What immortal hand or eye Could frame thy fearful symmetry? In what distant deeps or skies Burnt the fire of thine eyes? On what wings dare he aspire? What the hand dare seize the fire? And what shoulder, and what art, Could twist the sinews of thy heart? And when thy heart began to beat, What dread hand? and what dread feet? What the hammer? what the chain? In what furnace was thy brain? What the anvil? what dread grasp Dare its deadly terrors clasp? When the stars threw down their spears, And watered heaven with their tears, Did he smile his work to see? Did he who made the Lamb make thee? Tiger! Tiger! burning bright In the forests of the night, What immortal hand or eye Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

    William Blake

    Given that I'm a strong environmentalist my bias is unabashedly strong, but as a confirmed atheist even I can say that if we loose this species by way of our ignorance and greed we may have grounds for establishing original sin in our kind.

  • rock (Score:5, Funny)

    by arazor (55656) on Wednesday July 15, 2009 @11:53PM (#28712595)

    Turns out Lisa's rock really did work.

  • ridiculous (Score:5, Interesting)

    by nixish (1390127) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @01:00AM (#28713081)
    poaching is rampant there and i would not be surprised if some of the park officials are in on it. However, that's not the real cause. The real cause would be its demand in primarily oriental countries like China, Vietnam etc where they use tiger meat and bones (I think every part of their body) for medicinal/spiritual purposes. I think the open border into India's Himalayan neighbor Nepal has also affected Nepal's own tiger and rhino population. Hope the NGO's and the government clamps down these poachers. I am not sure what the remedy to the demand from the Oriental countries is besides Education and stricter rules about imports of the remains of these Endangered species.
  • I guess I was lucky. I was able to see one at the Corbett reserve in Ramnagar last year (there aren't too many and they're very people-shy- I was there three days, went all over the park and only saw one). Sounds like with the typical poor governance/law enforcement and general bad management in India the poachers are having a field day. Who knows how many more years anybody will be able to find a tiger in a tiger park in India?
  • by ciderVisor (1318765) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @04:36AM (#28714211)

    Is this one of the 4 Freedoms I keep hearing about ?

  • by slashmojo (818930) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @05:05AM (#28714339)

    Tigers are clearly a danger to the parks visitors so the new visitor safety campaign appears to be a great success and tourists can now roam freely around the tiger park without worrying that they or their children might become a tiger snack.

  • by 140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @05:39AM (#28714511) Journal
    Expect heavy pressure on all products derived from mega fauna due to the new found wealth and affordability of china. Rhino horns, elephant ivory, bengal tiger skin, claws and other body parts...

    The salary and benefits of a typical forest ranger in India is about 250$ a month, while his nephew in the city with barely passable English makes some 700$ a month in IT, phone bank, help desk jobs and more if technically qualified. Any wonder the warden turns a blind eye to poaching and accepts bribes?

    • by JSBiff (87824) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @04:43PM (#28723243) Journal

      If these animals are so economically valuable, why aren't we 'farming' them? I mean, instead of killing of the last 24 in the park, it seems like you should get much larger land, and raise the tigers, so you have several hundred of them, and you can fund the preservation of the tigers/elephants/whatever by selling off the body parts of a few per year.

      It's like this - chickens, cattle and pigs are at very little risk of going extinct, *because* of their economic value. Why don't we apply the same principle to these endagered species to make them *not* endangered anymore? If some Chinese Billionaire wants to pay the equivalent of $1 Million USD to have a Bengal tiger rug, then shouldn't we be exploiting that by selling off the coat of one tiger and using the million bucks to fund raising more tigers?

      It seems to me that *carefully managed*, very limited, legitimate, legal sale of such animal products can ensure the survival of those species, but by taking a stance of trying to completely outlaw all traffic in those products, we actually put those animals at *greater* risk, because farmers/ranchers do a much better job of managing their 'herds' than poachers do.

      No farmer is going to kill off so much of his livestock that he doesn't have enough left for successful breeding, but poachers just kill whatever they can and take it.

  • by pinkushun (1467193) on Thursday July 16, 2009 @06:02AM (#28714599) Journal
    But I see a world that's getting more screwed by humanity every day; we're all guilty.
  • by rlp (11898)

    Three of state's reserve forests - Kanha, Bandhavgarh and Pench - have been adjudged among the best managed tiger reserves in the country."

    Have you counted the tigers there recently?

  • In the third-world wildlife either pays for itself or it vanishes, plain and simple. With a desperate population on the verge of starvation, any resource not viewed as life-improving will quickly vanish. That's why tourism and well-regulated sport hunting are so important to the management of wildlife in the third world. It's also why game ranches for commercial purposes are a necessary tool for the successful restoration of many endangered species. John Stossel's video article below is very illuminating, a

    • by Nursie (632944)

      Right, so to save tigers we have to breed them to be shot at by rich, fat assholes.

      Fuck that.

  • In a world where people thing eating body parts of animals brings good luck and potentcy, wage war, give Brittney Spears a Grammy, do we seriously consider preserving Tiger populations?

    I think we expect too much of ourselves when stopping and taking a good hard look at the majority of our priorities are.

    I don't think we are getting smarter collectively anymore, if anything we've turned on the stupid and are drinking deep from the spiggot.

  • > Three years ago the park had a population of 24 tigers, however none were found this year.

    In a completely unrelated story, 24 flabulously wealthy men around the world are suing an undisclosed business because they were not actually able to get erections after taking a certain hideously expensive medicine.

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