KATHMANDU: Nepal's wild tiger population has nearly doubled over the last nine years, officials said on Monday, in a victory for the impoverished country's drive to save the endangered big cats.
Wildlife groups have welcomed the news as a sign that political involvement and innovative conservation strategies can reverse the decline of the majestic Royal Bengal tiger.
A survey carried out earlier this year counted 235 tigers in Nepal, up from around 121 in 2009. Conservationists and wildlife experts used more than 4,000 cameras and around 600 elephants, trawling a 2,700-kilometre (1,700-mile) route across Nepal's southern plains where the big cats roam.
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"This is a result of concentrated unified efforts by the government along with the local community and other stakeholders to protect the tiger's habitat and fight against poaching," Man Bahadur Khadka, director general of Nepal's Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation, said.
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