CATS Project to identify unreserved big cats’ territories in Madhya Pradesh

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 29 Jul 2017 11:18:19

International Tiger Day Special

By Ashish Rajput

TARGETING to double tiger population by 2022 in India, Global Tiger Forum will start Conservation Assured Tiger Standard (CATS) Project’ to identify unreserved big cats’ territories in Madhya Pradesh. CATS Project aims to implement tiger reserve protocol in unreserved territories to give pace to tiger conservation campaign.

“CATS project will be started soon in Madhya Pradesh to enforce tiger protection protocol as being implemented in tiger reserves. The project will be based to set minimum standards for effective management of tigers and assessment of these standards in relevant conservation practices in unreserved areas like Bhopal, Sehore and Balaghat,” informed Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF) (Wildlife), Madhya Pradesh Jitendra Agrawal.

PCCF Jitendra Agrawal while talking to ‘The Hitavada’ informed that Global Tiger Forum has initiated CATS Project in 13 tiger range countries in association with World Wildlife Fund (WWF).  The project will be based on standards, assessment and monitoring of implementing tiger conservation initiatives in identified territories. PCCF added that representatives of Global Tiger Forum will soon identify one or two tiger territories under unreserved forest areas in the State for materialising CATS Project.

Forest officers of identified areas will be given training of set standards to identify tiger territorial divisions. Methodology of task identification will be prepared to fulfill the gap in tiger conservation practices in reserved and unreserved tiger territories. He informed that project will be initially started as pilot projects in two identified areas. Trained forest officers will be deployed for implementing the same in other unreserved areas to address multiple factors of conservation management based on support of social, cultural, spiritual and economic needs of forest dwellers. Besides this, focus will be on richness of biodiversity, prey base and habitat covers.