Red deer are one of the most important
tiger prey species, and are also hunted
by throughout tiger range.
WCS attempts to reduce the sense of
hunters and tigers.
order to sustain a viable population of Amur tigers, all current tiger
habitat in the Russian Far East must be maintained. Yet only 10% of
existing Amur tiger habitat is protected in nature reserves, while the
rest exists as multiple-use hunting territories. For this reason,
hunters are key stakeholders in tiger conservation.
Hunting is an
important recreational and subsistence tradition in the Russian Far
East. There are more than 60,000 registered hunters in the region, who,
like tigers, rely on multiple-use lands. Wildlife management
organizations (WMOs) are responsible for managing hunting, controlling
poaching and conducting surveys of game species on leased hunting
territories encompassing about 80% of Russian tiger range.
WCS works with WMOs to promote effective wildlife management on multiple-use hunting leases, which will result in:
- An increase of ungulate populations;
- Conservation of endangered species (particularly Amur tigers);
- Improved rural livelihoods, with economic benefits linked to conservation of tigers and the landscapes they depend upon.
Legal Assistance, Education and Information Exchange
supported the creation of legal assistance centers that provide
consultations to WMOs in Primorsky and Khabarovsky Krais. Legal
assistance centers promote stable and proper functioning of hunting
leases, which is necessary for improving wildlife management.
1999, WCS has sponsored a number of education and training programs for
wildlife managers, and today we are working to facilitate development
of a quality wildlife management curriculum at a local university. WCS
also regularly organizes publication of materials for wildlife managers
and for the general public about the role of hunting leases in promoting
conservation. Finally, we supported creation of a Union of Hunters and
Fishermen in both Primorsky and Khabarovsky Krais in order to provide a
forum that brings together the most active wildlife managers to exchange
information and influence regional wildlife management policies.
order to facilitate development of replicable models of high-quality
wildlife management, WCS is providing consistent support to several WMOs
in Amur tiger range. Our goal is to demonstrate that if hunting
territories are properly managed, increases in ungulate populations and
profits can occur simultaneously, and that poaching and poor management –
not tigers - are not responsible for declines in ungulate density.
Tiger Friendly Certification
Tiger Friendly Certification (TFC) program provides economic incentives
for tiger conservation on hunting lease territories. Tigers are used as
an indicator of ecosystems integrity, and as a charismatic marketing
tool to evoke “green” consumer behavior. Tiger Friendly links access to
international markets for leases that meet certification criteria, which
include moderate densities of tigers, sufficient prey to support
tigers, effective anti-poaching activities, sustainable harvest
practices, community involvement and fair distribution of profits.