Tiger and human: a compromise is possible
and improve equipage of brigades involved in conflict mitigation.
On August 13, Khabarovsky Province Ministry of Natural Resources was informed that a tiger was observed in the neighborhood of Solontsovy village. To prove the information a ranger from the “conflict” brigade formed at the Ministry and consisted of staff from the Hunting Department and Khabarovsky Province Directorate on Wildlife Protection and Pas was sent to the site.
It was found out that on August 4-13 several dogs were found missing with one dog as minimum being the tiger victim. Size of its prints showed that they belonged to a young tiger female (2-3 years old) that has recently separated from its mother and was not experienced enough to prey ungulates by itself.
All attempts to scare the animal away were fruitless so it was decided to catch the tiger and examine it. On August 30, after receiving a catching permission from Rosprirodnadzor the “conflict” brigade staff in cooperation with Pacific Institute of Geography (the Russian Academy of Science) and WCS caught the tiger. The young tiger female found healthy was translocated and released into the wild the same day. The tiger release place was chosen in accordance with recommendations of the All-Russia Wildlife Research and Management Institute. The ungulates’ number in the tiger “new home” is high. The brigade staff will monitor the tiger movement and its hunting successes.
According to Sergei Aramilev, biodiversity conservation program coordinator at WWF Russia Amur branch, “Translocation of predators that were failed to be scared away is the most successful way out in conflict resolution as it allows saving an animal in the wild. In the Amur tiger range translocation method is being effectively used. One of the recent examples of it was in winter 2010 in Lesozavodsky district of Primorye. Back then a female tiger had got a habit to attack horses. Thanks to high professional skills of the Primorsky Hunting Department and WCS staff the animal was caught and translocated to another territory. Since that time no conflicts were registered on this tiger’s part. We hope that the August- 2012- young tiger will also successfully settle in the new place and will never meet a man”.
In late June, WWF Russia in cooperation with Primorsky Province Hunting Department and Orlinoye hunting club held a seminar aimed at raising rangers’ qualification in conflict resolution. Rangers of “conflict” groups formed at specially authorized governmental agencies in Primorsky and Khabarovsky Provinces were trained how to the catch, sedate, reanimate and how to provide the first vet aid. Also the trainees got to learn main features of the Amur tiger biology, types of conflict situations between tigers and humans and mitigation technics.
The training was provided by vets from Primorye Agricultural Academy, WWF experts, staff of the Russian Academy of Science and WCS. The second seminar will be held this fall.