June 10, 2022
Starting this year, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) will conduct elephant and leopard estimations alongside tiger estimations.
The tiger census is conducted every four years, whereas the elephant census is conducted every five years. According to the 2018-19 data, there are 2,967 tigers in the country, and less than 30,000 elephants according to the 2017 figure.
The elephants’ data came from what the Ministry officials called a “head count” which, they said, is fraught with potential errors.
“The head count method is outdated and leads to errors,” the officials said, adding that “The new ways rely on robust scientific methods based on statistical models.”
While the tiger population is estimated using camera traps, matching and identifying their stripes, for elephants, it is their dung that plays a vital role. Studying the density as well as performing DNA analysis on the elephant dung samples provides an insight into the elephant population in the region.
It was announced that the data for all three species would be out in December.
Stating that elephants and tigers share almost the same habitat, the Ministry officials said that “A protocol for the pan-India estimation of tigers and elephants was ideated, worked upon, adopted and released in August last year.”
Source – A wire agency with minimal modifications to the headline and text.
By- Priya Bharti
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