Currently there are only an estimate of 2,500 tigers remaining in the wild. Therefore is vitally important to take action in protecting tigers now more than ever. Tigers are at the top of the food chain so they have no natural predators, making humans the ultimate cause of their plight. Human impacts such as poaching, habitat destruction, and global warming have had a devastating effect on tigers.
Much of the time, poachers hunt tigers for the use of tiger parts in traditional Chinese medicines. Although there has been scientific proof that tiger parts have no medicinal value, many people continue to slaughter them. Tigers are protected by law under the endangered species act because of their low population size and proximity to extinction. Tiger parts can be sold on black markets for thousands of dollars, so killing them is tempting for struggling poachers. Tiger poaching tends to occur in low income areas of countries such as India, Vietnam, Malaysia, Burma and Russia, because people feel that they have no other means of income to feed their families.
Destruction of Ecosystem's:
Habitat destruction also threatens to wipe wild tigers from our planet forever. Tigers need a lot of land to survive, because they are solitary animals that often roam hundreds of miles per week to hunt. The fragmentation of their habitats from logging, urbanization and pollution has caused their hunting range to reduce dramatically resulting in the starvation of many tigers. Habitat destruction affects availability of prey, water cleanliness, and hiding places for tiger cubs.
Global warming has posed a great threat to Bengal Tigers in particular. Since this specific subspecies of tiger relies on mangroves to hunt and breed, global warming has taken a toll on their population size. Mangroves act as sponges that soak up pollution and impurities. They also prevent things like tidal wives because they keep water flow continuous. Global warming however, has caused many mangroves to perish because of rising water levels, increased CO2, and changing temperatures.