Incredible camera trap video footage from the forests of Thailand have given conservationists confirmation that anti-poaching efforts in that country are paying off, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society.
The footagetaken by camera traps from several locations across Thailand's Western Forest Complex over the last yearhas revealed a cornucopia of rare glimpses into the lives of tigers, Asian elephants, gaurs, sun bears, and many other species. The clips show a tigress and her cubs feeding on an animal carcass, leopards marking their territory with scent, wild pigs nursing their young, even Asian elephants mating.
"The video represents a huge payoff for the government of Thailand, which has invested considerable resources in protecting wildlife and preventing illegal hunters from plundering the country's natural heritage," said Joe Walston, Director of the Wildlife Conservation Society's Asia Program. "We thank the government of Thailand for collaborating with WCS and others to put in place best practices in law enforcement and monitoring tigers and prey in Western Forest Complex."
In particular, the camera trap footage shows that tiger and prey populations have stabilized in the large core area of the Western Forest Complex, an area measuring some 18,000-square kilometers (larger than the state of Connecticut) and comprising 17 contiguous protected areas. According to recent estimates, the region is home to 125-175 tigers. The complex also contains one of the largest and most important elephant populations in Southeast Asia. In addition, the video clips detected the presence of especially rare and elusive species, including clouded leopards, banteng (a wild cattle species), and many others.
The sheer quantity of footage and diversity of species highlights Thailand's pre-eminence as a leader in conservation and enforcement, boasting what is considered one of the best anti-poaching forces in all of Asia. Every year
|Contact: John Delaney|
Wildlife Conservation Society