All wild tigers worldwide are now in danger of becoming extinct and thus need your help. From climate change to illegal, unregulated hunting, dedicated and sustained tiger conservation work is very much needed. Otherwise, these animals will not stand a change of surviving in the long run. In particular, you will play a vital role in protecting tigers worldwide as a tiger conservation volunteer. If volunteering in tiger conservation is something that is of great interest to you, you should definitely read on. We are going to tell you what you can do to help save tigers worldwide. Learn just how you can get involved here. In case you are curious about what kind of tiger conservation voluntary work might await you, you can also learn more.
Threats to Wild Tigers
Like most wild animals, pollution, global warming, and climate change pose a threat to tigers. As a prospective tiger conservation volunteer abroad, you should know just how global warming impacts tigers. In some regions, such as in India, tigers are losing their natural habitats due to costal erosion. In other areas, fresh river water is starting to become more saline due to water from the ocean moving up rivers. In turn, this leads to a higher concentration of salt in the river waters that tigers drink. Thus, this is causing the tiger population to move to different areas, where the potential for conflict with humans, who live in these areas, greatly increases. Once tigers become a danger to humans in these areas, they will likely be killed.
Moreover, black-market traded of tiger pelts continues to be a huge problem. Tigers are still being poached and hunted as trophies and as long as this practice continues to the current degree, tigers will remain in danger of becoming extinct. Also note that tigers are even killed for their various body parts, since some of these parts are believed to have medicinal properties. Tiger parts are even used as part of various traditional medicines in Asia. Unfortunately, these threats are a reality and tiger conservation programs all over the world are much needed.
Why Tiger Conservation is Much Needed?
In fact, the total wild tiger population used to contain about 100,000 animals in Asia just 100 years ago. As of today, the current wild tiger population is equal to less than 3,200 wild tigers. Although these are mere estimates, a 93% decrease in Asia’s tiger population has taken place in the last 100 years or so. 40% of this decrease is estimated to have taken place within the last 40 years. This clearly shows how desperately many wild tigers need your help.
Hence, these numbers should not just be cause for concern, but might make you all the more eager about getting involved as a tiger conservation volunteer abroad. Please know that your voluntary work in Asia (mostly India and China) is definitely going to have an impact. In particular, it is these tigers that are going to benefit from your work as a volunteer in tiger conservation:
- Bengal Tiger
- Sumatran Tiger
- Amur Tiger
- South China Tiger
If you want to help these tigers, your work as a volunteer will thus take you to some of these countries:
Volunteering in tiger conservation - what kind of work will you be doing?
From Indonesia and Malaysia to China, becoming a tiger conservation volunteer is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Your tiger conservation volunteer work is going to combine personal and professional growth, thus making your time at a tiger conservation volunteer program abroad all the more worthwhile. While you might have high hopes of getting up close and personal with tigers during your time as a tiger conservation volunteer, this will not necessarily happen. Keep in mind that education and community outreach activities are just as important. After all, tiger conservation will only be successful if the local population does their part. Hence, you will be asked to educate the local community members in regards to why tigers need saving and what they can do to protect these wild predators. Convincing people that they should not use tiger body parts for medicinal purposes might not be easy. Yet, doing so is key to tiger survival.
Some tiger conservation programs even provide a temporary home to orphaned or injured tigers, wherefore you might be asked to work with these tigers directly. However, this is not guaranteed. In particular, this type of tiger conservation volunteer work might mean feeding tigers, cleaning their cages, or helping with administering much needed vet treatments. Tracking and monitoring the local tiger population will moreover be part of your job description at most tiger conservation programs. This not only means observing tigers out in the wild. Instead, data input work will be required as well. In fact, most tiger conservation programs are going to need your help with office work, too. From marketing to web development and fundraising, the more skills you bring to the table, the better.
In turn, you will get to acquire new skills as a tiger conservation volunteer. If you plan on becoming a biologist yourself, these skills will prove to be particularly useful. Some of the tiger conservation activities that you will likely be engaged in are going to include tracking tigers via camera tracks. Not only will you learn how to set up and use these traps, but tigers are not the only animals that you will be tracking. Depending on the location of your tiger conservation program and the program specifications, tracking the following animals might be part of your job description, too:
- Sun Bears
Overall, the goal is to help with anti-poaching as well as habitat-sustaining efforts to make sure that tigers do not become extinct anytime soon. As part of this kind of tiger conservation work, you might get to work with the local indigenous community or explore remote rainforest. If you love being adventurous, tiger conservation volunteer work is certainly for you! As a seasoned volunteer, you might even be part of a dedicated anti-poaching patrol team and work with local law enforcement. From exciting walks through the jungle to exploring limestone caves, physical fitness is required for this line of volunteer work. Therefore, you should ask yourself what you can bring to the table as a tiger conservation volunteer. Take your time to find the program that is the right fit for you given your skill set and personal preferences.