Jilin province of China and Primorsky province of Russia: collaboration on tiger and leopard conservation
The agreement on transboundary cooperation for Amur tiger and Far Eastern leopard and their habitat protection was signed by the heads of Forestry Department of Jilin province, Wildlife and Hunting Department of Primorsky province and Special Inspection “Tiger”. As part of the agreement, Jilin and Primorsky provinces will increase information sharing on Amur tiger and Far East leopard protection, work to adopt identical monitoring systems for tigers and their prey, and conduct joint ecological surveys and develop plans to launch an anti-poaching campaign along the China-Russia boarder.
“A new transboundary network would provide a wider and healthier habitat for Amur tigers and other endangered species, such as the Far East leopard, musk deer and goral,” said Mr. Yu Changchun, Director of Conservation Department of Jilin Forestry Department.
“The leading scientists and environmentalists of Russia, China and the USA had developed a program on restoration of Amur tiger population in Changbaishan. I hope this Agreement will become one of the important steps in its realization. It is very important, that Russian specialists will be able to share their positive experience in tiger population restoration and research. At present moment, population of Amur tiger in China is on the brink of extinction and does not exceed twenty individuals. It is possible, that an example of such cooperation will lead to the signing of other contracts on the higher level.” – said Sergey Aramilev, the coordinator of biodiversity conservation projects of WWF-Russia Amur Branch.
“While tigers – the species at the top of the eco-system – are better conserved through the network, other species, the forest habitat and all the bio-diversity resources will also benefit from this network,” said Dr. Zhu Chunquan, WWF-China’s Conservation Executive Director.
Amur Tiger Cultural Festival, which was organized by state Agencies of China, with the participation of WCS and “Phoenix” Fund, took place on the last weekend in Hunchun (Jilin Province) and had gathered thousands of people from China and Russia. This huge and bright celebration, was prepared and conducted on a wide scale, and, of course, had drawn attention to the tigers. On 30th August, the scientists and NGOs representatives from China, Russia, Bangladesh, Nepal, Thailand and Vietnam continued the discussions on tiger population status and measures for its protection at the Tiger Conservation Forum.