July 29 is Global Tiger Day, also called International Tiger Day, first celebrated in 2010. It was founded at the Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit that had been called in response to the shocking news that 97% of all wild tigers had disappeared in the last century, with only around 3,000 left alive. The goal of the day is to promote a global system for protecting the natural habitats of tigers and to raise public awareness and support for tiger conservation issues. The UN recognized it as an international holiday in 2016. Though five species of tigers have become extinct, there are five still viable, Bengal tiger, Indochinese tiger, Malayan tiger, Sumatran tiger, and Amur tiger.
Many organizations are involved in this work. The World Wildlife Fund has the ambitious goal of doubling the world tiger population. They feel poaching is the biggest threat to tigers, and urge, “tiger-range governments to strengthen anti-poaching efforts and reinforce investments in rangers, in order to halt the crisis and safeguard wild tigers from poachers.” If this has resonated with you, you can adopt a tiger at their site.
Another group working to protect tigers is the National Tiger Conservation Authority. Their Project Tiger works with the Indian government, which has increased tiger reserves in that country. They also consider poaching and the illegal trade in tiger body parts to be the main cause of their decline. Their work has made it so that India has the largest number of tigers in the wild, 1706, as of 2010, which seems to be the latest year for figures.
Your local zoo may have special things going on for this day. Hopefully, by working together worldwide, we can save this beautiful animal.
Quotes about tigers
Tyger Tyger, burning bright,
In the forests of the night;
What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
In what distant deeps or skies.
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand, dare seize the fire?
And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?
Tigers, except when wounded or when man-eaters, are on the whole very good-tempered… Occasionally a tiger will object to too close an approach to its cubs or to a kill that it is guarding. The objection invariably takes the form of growling, and if this does not prove effective it is followed by short rushes accompanied by terrifying roars. If these warnings are disregarded, the blame for any injury inflicted rests entirely with the intruder.–Jim Corbett
He who rides a tiger is afraid to dismount.–Chinese Proverb
Better to live one year as a tiger, than a hundred as a sheep.–Madonna
Van Gogh would’ve sold more than one painting if he’d put tigers in them.–Bill Watterson (Calvin & Hobbes)
It is not part of a true culture to tame tigers, any more than it is to make sheep ferocious.–Henry David Thoreau
When waking a tiger, use a long stick.–Mao Tse-Tung
When a man wants to murder a tiger he calls it sport; when a tiger wants to murder him he calls it ferocity.–George Bernard Shaw
An infallible method of conciliating a tiger is to allow oneself to be devoured.–Konrad Adenauer
There is no off switch on a tiger.–German Proverb
An oppressive government is more to be feared than a tiger.–Confucius
The most magnificent creature in the entire world, the tiger is.–Jack Hanna
The violinist is that peculiarly human phenomenon distilled to a rare potency – half tiger, half poet.–Yehudi Menuhin
If I produce a 450-pound Bengal tiger, it’s going to create a lot more wonder than if I produce a rabbit.–Doug Henning
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