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India can never turn its back on tigers

Over half the worlds wild tiger population remain in India but require constant monitoring and protection says wildlife biologist George Schaller.   The eminent American wildlife biologist, conservationist and author, has spent a lifetime studying some of the world’s most elusive species: mountain gorillas in central Africa, snow leopards in the Himalayas, giant pandas in China, and jaguars in South America. He is senior conservationist at the New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS).  Schaller, who visited Bengaluru recently, talks of how India’s tiger census techniques may not be accurate, that local communities must benefit from tourism in protected areas, and that his hugely diverse range of interests could owe to his “short attention span”.

There has been a lot of jubilation over the rise in tiger numbers in India; but scientists, including from WCS, have said the census methodology was flawed, that the numbers could be unreliable. 

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