Tiger smuggling in Primorye has grown along with the number of orphaned cubs

Environmentalists Primorye noted the substantial growth in contraband detection skins and derivatives Red Siberian tigers in the past 12 months, among the main reasons for selecting a possible increase of poaching activity, and strengthening of law enforcement in this area.

Store them for future use

Environmentalists say that the cause of increase in the number of orphaned cubs, are different, but all agree that the amount of excavated smuggling recently increased substantially.

"This year, there was a surge in sightings of tiger skins … For 14 years I worked in special inspection" Tiger "in 1995, was removed only 8-10 skins, while only in the past year were found the remains of at least 15 individuals," — told RIA Novosti Director of the Environment Fund "Phoenix" Sergei Bereznyuk.

According to him, in 2011, were found in Primorye derivatives only one tiger, in 2010 — three. The biggest party in tiger skins to 2012 was withdrawn in 2007, when police found four pieces.

Bereznyuk sure that the increased volume of excavated "tiger smuggling", and the increasing number of orphaned cubs show an increase of activity in anticipation of the introduction of poachers amendments to the Criminal Code to toughen responsibility for the production, trafficking and transportation of animals listed in the Red Book.

"While there is a solution to this issue, poachers and illegal buyers immediately and for the future to make stocks of tiger skins and bones. As a result, the gene pool of a population can significantly to poverty", — concluded the ecologist.

Police stepped up

At the same time, not all ecologists believe that the growth of "smuggling of tiger" says an increase in the activity of poachers.

Coordinator of the Amur branch of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Russia Sergey biodiversity Aramilev told RIA Novosti that the Fund does not consider the statistics of detections tiger skins direct indicator of the activity of poachers.

"According to our experts, each year as a result of poaching or accidental shooting killed about 30 tigers in the rare years, the number increases to 40-45 individuals. During the last three or four years, the level of poaching is stable, the study of the black market and the data from the monitoring of the tiger is confirm "- said Aramilev.

"Revitalization of the Interior Ministry linked to the already happened and will shortly change in legislation that significantly toughen penalties for the sale and storage of tiger body parts. We forecast that the number of penetrated facts will only increase, which should eventually lead to a decrease in poaching to minimum ", — he added.

In his view, the growing number of orphaned cubs in Primorye (the 2011 game wardens saved one cub, and in 2012 — seven) also reported increased poaching activity, and is a derivative of several factors. Among them — a high snow cover, because of which the tigress harder to feed calves, as well as increased activity of the local population and the protection of wildlife.

The program works

WWF view an increase in activity of law enforcement agencies in solving crimes in the environmental field also share in the protection of wildlife in Primorye.

According to RIA Novosti, he does not believe that poachers stockpile tiger skins and derivatives for the future.

According to the Director of the Department for the protection, control and regulate the use of animals Primorye Vladimir Vasiliev, a significant role in solving crimes played a national program for the conservation of tigers. In particular, at the end of 2010 at the Tiger Summit in St. Petersburg, the prime ministers of 13 countries adopted a declaration to double the number of tigers by 2022.

"After the order of Vladimir Putin on the need for careful monitoring of population and intensified our work and the work of law enforcement agencies … Now almost all areas of smuggling channels are blocked," — said the director of RIA Novosti.

He said that according to the Resolution of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation of November 2012, an attempt to keep derivatives equated to aiding the hunt for Red animals.

In this case, according to Vasilyev, the increasing number of orphaned cubs due to a general increase in the birth rate of the Red predators.

"Conditions tiger breeding is good. Due to the large crop of acorns were more wild boars, red deer — is the main food of tigers, it has become easier to obtain, and therefore has more cubs … What of them refuse the mother happens in natural environment, not sure that the tigress was killed by poachers "- concluded the director of the department.

Siberian tiger lives in the Russian Far East — the Khabarovsk and Primorsky regions. In the middle of XIX century the Russian population was more than one thousand individuals. Predation and destruction of its habitat has led to the fact that for a hundred years, the number of individuals was reduced to 50, and the Siberian tiger found in the 40-ies of XX century on the brink of extinction. After the measures the population size was increased. Recent surveys show that the predator population has stabilized at around 450 individuals.

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