Nepal's tiger numbers are burning brighter

29th Jul 2013

Wildlife-loving holidaymakers on tailor-made specialist tours to Nepal have been given an extra incentive to travel.

One of the biggest draws to the south Asian country is the tiger, which can be seen in its wildlife reserves and parks.

The number of these endangered beasts in Nepal has increased by 63% over the past three years to almost 200, according to a new survey.

The new figure marks a "milestone" in the bid to double the number of wild tigers by 2022, officials in the Himalayan country said.

The Bengal tiger is the most common subspecies of tiger, but there are believed to be fewer than 2,500 left in the wild across India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, China and Burma.

The joint tiger survey by India and Nepal calculated numbers of tigers in the Terai Arc Landscape stretching 600 miles (965.6 kilometres) across 15 protected areas in the two countries.

Nepal's study, conducted between February and June, covered five protected areas and three wildlife corridors.

It found tiger numbers in Bardia National Park had nearly trebled from around 18 in 2009 to 50 this year.

Numbers had more than doubled in Suklaphanta Wildlife Reserve, from eight to 17, and in Chitwan National Park had seen numbers rise from 91 to 120.

The recently created Banke National Park has an estimated four tigers.

Megh Bahadur Pandey, director general of Nepal's Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation, said: "Tigers are a part of Nepal's natural wealth."


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