The main threat to tigers and their prey in the Bangladesh Sundarbans is poaching. Enhancing law enforcement and strengthening the capacity of the frontline staff to reduce and eliminate threats to tigers are immediate priorities for securing tiger populations in their source sites. A Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool (SMART) has been proven to be an effective tool in collecting information on threats to species and their habitat. The Bangladesh Forest Department (BFD) is implementing SMART wildlife enforcement and monitoring patrols with technical support from WCS Bangladesh. Project objectives are to, (1) Map high-risk areas and assess spatial and temporal patterns of illegal activity affecting tigers and their prey using data from SMART patrols and camera trapping; (2) Establish a long-term system for monitoring threats to tigers and their prey based on SMART data and camera traps set in strategic locations; and, (3) Support the SMART patrolling teams to achieve zero poaching of tigers and their prey in the Sundarbans.
Former Project Titles:
- Bengal Tiger Conservation (Bagh) Activity (2014-2018)
- The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has joined hands with the Government of Bangladesh to protect Sundarbans tigers through the Bengal Tiger Conservation Activity (Bagh). Under the leadership of the Bangladesh Forest Department, USAID’s Bagh Activity is being implemented by WildTeam, a Bangladeshi organization working for biodiversity conservation since 2003. The Bagh Activity will also receive technical support from the Smithsonian Institution (SI) and the Bangladesh Centre for Advanced Studies (BCAS). USAID’s Bagh Activity will continue from 2014 to 2018. From spreading conservation awareness in communities living adjacent to the Sundarbans to increasing vigilance against wildlife crime, USAID’s Bagh Activity will unite people, institutions, and policymakers together in contributing to tiger conservation in five components: 1) Expanded knowledge base; 2) Reduced illegal wildlife trafficking; 3) Minimized human-wildlife conflict; 4) Enhanced communications, outreach and gender engagement; and 5) Improved livelihoods for conservation.