In the Khulna part of the Sundarbans, the movement of Bengal tigers was reduced. Last time, only two tigers were found in the area of about 2000 square kilometers. But hopefully, tigers have started growing again in that area. At least 10 to 15 tigers have been spotted in the Khulna area in the tiger survey started this year. Several families of tigers including two cubs have been seen. The number of deer, the tiger’s main food in the area, has also increased.
The forest department got these data by analyzing the data of the ongoing survey in the area of about 4000 square kilometers of Sundarbans. The forest department’s survey team says that tigers are usually seen more often in the Satkhira part of the Sundarbans. This time also more tigers were seen there than last time. The number of baby tigers has also been seen almost twice as compared to last time. It is thought that overall the number of tigers in Sundarbans may increase by 20 to 30 percent compared to last time.
Earlier, a tiger footprint was seen every two kilometers in the Sundarbans canal. It has doubled in the new survey.
Forest department sources say that one of the objectives of the survey this time is to increase the number of tigers in areas where tigers are less in the Sundarbans, such as Khulna. For this, where there are more tigers, they will be brought and released in Khulna region. However, in the survey, more tigers were found in Khulna than expected. Now the purpose of the project is being changed to protect tigers in Khulna.
Rajvender Jhala, Chief Consultant of India’s Tiger Census-2015, Chief Consultant of Bangladesh’s Tiger Census Methodology and Head of the Wildlife Institute of India spoke about the Sundarbans tiger survey. In response to a question sent by Prothom Alo on January 3, he said that the main food of Sundarban tigers is deer. If the number of deer increases in the forest, the number of tigers will definitely increase. At the same time, the number of tigers can increase even if tiger hunting is reduced in the forest.
Tiger dead again in Sundarbans, who has taken a step
The survey is being done by dividing Khulna, Bagerhat and Satkhira districts of Sundarbans into four areas. More than 1,200 cameras have been installed in different parts of the forest. As soon as you come in front of the camera, the picture of the tiger is automatically taken. The number of tigers is determined by analyzing that picture. According to the physical structure, the stripes on the tiger’s skin are different. The number of tigers is determined by looking at that pattern. And usually all the tigers come to drink water in the Sundarbans canal. Tiger footprints on the banks of the canal. The impression varies according to the type of tiger. Thus the number of tigers is counted by looking at the footprints.
Our entire survey will be completed before this year’s International Tiger Day (July 29). By that time we will publish the final results of the survey.
Project Director Abu Nasser Mohsin Hossain
As part of the survey, 1,200 canals of the Sundarbans were observed on the ground. Earlier surveys showed a tiger footprint every two kilometers on both sides of the canal. This time, the research team saw one impression every kilometer. This impression indicates an increase in tiger migration in the Sundarbans.
When asked, Chief Conservator of Forests Amir Hossain Chowdhury told Prothom Alo, “We have launched smart guarding with the help of law enforcement and the local people to protect the tigers of Sundarbans.” Most of the bandits who have been involved in various crimes including tiger killing in Sundarbans have surrendered. Apart from this, the number of tigers has increased due to overall conservation management.
The survey is being done by dividing Khulna, Bagerhat and Satkhira districts of Sundarbans into four areas. More than 1,200 cameras have been installed in different parts of the forest.
According to the sources of the forest department, bandits regularly hunted tigers in the Sundarbans. Tigers are getting protection as a result of joint operations and increased patrolling. The reproduction rate of tigers has also increased. From 2010 to 2018, two to four people were killed by tiger attacks every year. In the last five years, human deaths due to tiger attacks have decreased. An average of two people die in tiger attacks every two years, and these deaths occur while doing some work inside the forest and collecting honey. Many of those who died in tiger attacks were members of forest infiltrators.
Tiger counting has started in the eastern part of Sundarbans, cameras will be installed at 295 points
The forest department says tigers are being counted under the Sundarban Tiger Conservation Project. The Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change gave administrative approval to the project on March 23 last year. This will include translocation of Sundarban tigers, placement and monitoring of satellite collars on at least two tigers, detection of parasitic infections and other diseases and extent of tigers, data collection and analysis.
In this regard, project director Abu Naser Mohsin Hossain told Prothom Alo, “Our entire survey will be completed before this year’s International Tiger Day (July 29). During that time we will publish the results of the survey finally.
In 2004, the first forest department and IUCN jointly conducted a tiger census in the Sundarbans. The number of tigers found in the survey counting footprints is 440. Later in 2015, a state-of-the-art tiger survey was carried out using the first camera traps to photograph tigers and count footprints.
According to the sources of the Forest Department, the area of the Bangladesh part of Sundarbans is 6 thousand 17 square kilometers. Out of this forest land is 4 thousand 832 and swamp land is 1 thousand 185 square kilometers. According to 1997 data, 289 species of animals live in this forest land and 219 species live in water. According to the 2015 tiger census, there were 106 tigers in the Sundarbans. And in the 2018 census, there were 114.
When asked, Abdul Aziz, one of the members of the tiger survey team and Professor of Zoology Department of Jahangirnagar University, told Prothom Alo, “According to the survey, 114 tigers were found. However, taking into account the size of the forest and the amount of food for tigers, that number can be increased to 150. For this, the initiative taken to protect the tiger should be continued.
According to the prothomalo