Madhya Pradesh retains its top position in the count of the big cats. Representational image: Twitter/National Tiger Conservation Authority

‘Status of Tigers’ report: India has 3,682 tigers; MP retains top spot

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The number of tigers in Madhya Pradesh rose to 785 in 2022 from 526 in 2018, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said on Saturday (July 29) as he greeted the state’s people on International Tiger Day.

Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Bhupender Yadav also congratulated Madhya Pradesh for retaining its status as the “leading tiger state of India”.

According to the report titled “Status of Tigers: Co-predators & Prey in India-2022”, released by the National Tiger Conservation Authority and Wildlife Institute of India, Madhya Pradesh has the highest number of tigers in the country, followed by Karnataka (563) and Uttarakhand (560). Madhya Pradesh forests added 259 tigers in a span of four years, as per the survey.

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The number of tigers in India has increased from 2,967 in 2018 to 3,682 in 2022, an annual rise of 6 per cent, according to the latest government data released on Saturday.

With this, India has become home to approximately 75 per cent of the world’s tiger population, Union Minister of State for Forest, Environment and Climate Change Ashwini Kumar Choubey said in Ramnagar, Uttarakhand, while releasing the data for 2022.

“It is a matter of great pleasure that as a result of cooperation of the people of our state and untiring efforts of the Forest Department, the number of tigers in our state has increased to 785 from 526 in four years,” Chouhan said in a tweet.

Also readPM releases latest census data, India’s tiger population in 2022 at 3,167

Congratulating the people of the state for this success, he further said, “Let us all together take a pledge to conserve nature for future generations on the occasion of International Tiger Day.”

The tiger count in the state was 300 in 2006, but in 2010 the state slipped from its number one position as the tiger population declined to 257 against 300 in Karnataka. In 2014, Karnataka recorded 406 tigers while MP recorded 300 big cats.

But the tiger population in Madhya Pradesh rose thereafter as it reclaimed the top position in 2018 with 526 big cats recorded against 524 in Karnataka. The state has six tiger reserves: Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Panna, Pench, Satpura and Sanjay–Dubri Tiger Reserve.

Union minister Yadav also took to Twitter to congratulate Madhya Pradesh for the achievement. “With 785 tigers as per the latest tiger estimation exercise, MP is the Leading Tiger State of India! This reflects MP’s commitment to conserving tigers through intensive protection and monitoring by involving local communities,” he said in his tweet.

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi released the “Status of Tigers 2022” to mark the completion of 50 years of “Project Tiger” in April, the government had said there are at least 3167 tigers in India. The Tiger census is held every four years in the country.

“There are a maximum of 3925 tigers in the country. The average number is 3,682,” a senior official from the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) said.

(With agency inputs)

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