India will use an app called M-Stripe to count tigers in its Sundarbans. Authorities believe that the surveillance software could be used to track tigers in the Indian part of the Sundarbans.
Most of the Sundarbans fell in Bangladesh. The rest is in West Bengal, India. The latest census in the state found 96 tigers. Forest officials say the number could rise to more than 100 with the new method.
For so long, tigers have been counted in the Sundarbans, as in other parts of India, by conducting surveys on foot and gathering data from various sources. But since it is quite difficult in the remote Sundarbans, this time the tiger will be counted by e-filing in the M-Stripe app. Besides, trap camera will also be used like last time. They can also be identified by the striped markings on the tiger’s body.
A training program has started in Sajanekhali of South 24 Parganas of the state on Tuesday on how the forest workers of Sundarbans will work with M-Stripe app. Tapas Das, field director of the Sundarbans Tiger Project, told reporters that training has started for 50 forest officers and staff. At the end of the training, they will explain the use of the app to another 400 forest workers. The app will be on everyone’s mobile phone.
A team led by Wildlife Institute of India scientist Kamar Qureshi has added some changes to the M-Stripe app to foresters’ mobile phones. Kamar Qureshi said that if geo-tagging could be used to collect information on the Sundarbans area, it would be beneficial for future surveys. And the information obtained in this method will be accurate.
For the tiger census, trap cameras will be installed at 646 places in an area of 2,500 sq km in the tiger range of the Sundarbans in West Bengal. The trap camera will take pictures for a month. Then all the information will be taken by opening the camera. In addition, after the second week of December, foresters will start surveying tigers by boat through the M-Stripe app. The information collected through the camera and the app will be recorded by March. It will be sent to the National Forest Conservation Authority later in April.