The Science behind “1411”:Method of tiger monitoring in India

Some four years back - a figure ‘1411’ drew attentionof all who were concerned about conservation of our National Animal – theTiger. The figure, also cited in a popular advertisement of a telecom company,represented the country level tiger estimate – arrived at following a methodologythat used the blend of the best science and technology in a holistic andtransparent manner. With this, the old method of getting total count of tigerson the basis of pugmark analysis which depends on identifying individual tigersby experts, was replaced by a method which indicates spatial occupancy,population extent and limits, connectivity between populations, and habitat andprey conditions which constitute the crucial elements for the continuedsurvival of the tiger in a landscape.

Moreover, such robust estimate of population and itsuse in regular monitoring is important for management and conservation of aspecies. It also helps in setting objectives and monitoring the progress ofmanagement / conservation programmes.

The presentation deals in detail the current methodologyof tiger monitoring in India.