Why have spiked tiger attacks Nepal’s Bardia National Park?
In late March, Dalli Rawat went into Bardia National Park in western Nepal to forage for vegetables. As Rawat, a 62-year-old local villager, bent over to pick up fiddlehead ferns, she was attacked by a tiger. The three people she was with had to run for their lives. When they returned with army officials, it was to recover her partially eaten body.
Nepal’s population of endangered Bengal tigers is on the rise. The last tiger census in 2018 estimated there were 235 tigers in the country – up by 94% on the first count of 121 in 2009. The 2018 census found nearly 87 Bengal tigers in Bardia National Park, the country’s largest, up from 18 in 2009.
The country is on track to become the first to double its wild tiger population – a target adopted by 13 tiger range countries at a meeting of the Global Tiger Initiative in 2010. In the decade before 2019, no human fatalities associated with human-tiger conflict were reported in the district of Bardia, in southwest Nepal: a remarkable conservation success story.
But recently that seems to have changed. In the past nine months, 10 people have been killed by tigers within the park’s territory. Read the full article by Tulsi Rauniyar published in The Third Pole on 11th May 2021 here
TOFTigers comment – Bardia is a fabulous destination for any nature lovers, and its conservation success over the last decade is a triumph. So sad that its success is now inevitably running into conflict with local communities. Solutions are never easy.