KUCHING, July 7: A female Malayan tiger was spotted with her four tiger cubs earlier this year.
In a statement, World Wide Fund for Nature(WWF) Malaysia said, it was a welcome sight especially in the lead up to Global Tiger Day celebrations this month.
Its Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, Sophia Lim said that there are only fewer than 150 tiger population in Peninsular Malaysia, hence this latest development renews hope that this endangered species can be saved from the brink of extinction.
“It is crucial that we continue our patrols, to protect these cubs and their mother from the existing threats of poaching and loss of habitat,” Lim added.
Perak State Parks Corporation (PSPC) director, Shah Redza Hussein commented on this issue by saying the tigers will be able to thrive in the wild with the presence of suitable habitat and availability of prey as food for survival.
“We need sustained and stronger anti-poaching efforts to ensure that these cubs are safe from poachers and can survive into adulthood,” he said.
In an effort to achieve the goal, the Department of Wildlife and National Parks of Peninsular Malaysia (Perhilitan) collaborated with WWF-Malaysia’s anti-poaching teams and PSPC’s Orang Asli Menraq Patrol Unit to regularly patrol the Royal Belum State Park.
The park covers an area spanning 117,500 hectares.
This collaborative effort will be able to help to repopulate the tigers, considering that there is also sufficient food and safety.
Based on a statement by WWF, regular patrolling have proved to be effective as it reduced poaching incidents by almost 98%.
Another effort is to implement stricter laws for wildlife crimes with the Wildlife Conservation Act 2020 (Act 716) bringing the maximum fine to RM1 million from RM500,000 for offenders.
Two other key milestones in stamping out poaching incidents were the establishment of the National Tiger Task Force headed by the Prime Minister, and the setting up of a Wildlife Crime Bureau under the Royal Malaysia Police. -TVS
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