Statistics provided by the official database of the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) show that the death toll of wild tigers in the country was 97 in 2016, the highest among the annual death figure of the big cat in the past five years. In 2015 there were 70 wild tiger deaths, in 2014 it was 66, in 2013, 63 and in 2012, 72.
The wild tiger toll in 2016 began with three deaths reported on January 2 from three different States, Assam, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh. The last one was reported on December 28 at Sehore district of Madhya Pradesh. A whopping 30 wild tiger deaths were reported from Madhya Pradesh alone in 2016.
Karnataka followed with 17 deaths and Maharashtra with 15 wild tiger deaths last year. Among the deaths, only 18 were due to natural causes.
Four deaths were caused by poisoning, 12 deaths due to infighting between tigers and one each caused by drowning, electrocution and poaching.
The poaching was reported from the Chikmagalur territorial division of Karnataka.
Two tigers, one at Gudalur in Tamil Nadu and the other at Corbett National Park, Uttarakhand, were “eliminated” by authorities following conflict with man. The NTCA data say that cause of death of the remaining tigers was awaited.
On March 28, 2016, three tigers were found dead due to poisoning in the Satosha beat area of the Pench National Park in Madhya Pradesh.
Highest in April
The highest number of wild tiger deaths was in April — 12, and in that month five deaths were reported from Madhya Pradesh.
The country lost four tigers on April 26, three tigers on December 8 and two tigers each on January 21, April 2, April 8, May 7, November 4 and November 24, according to the database.
30 deaths reported from Madhya Pradesh in 2016, followed by Karnataka (17) and Maharashtra (15)