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International Tiger Day

Did you know that today is International Tiger Day? And did you know that Tigers are at risk of extinction?

International Tiger Day is held annualy on July 29 to give worldwide attention to the reservation of tigers. It is both an awareness day as a celebration.

It was founded at the Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit in 2010. This was done because at that moment wild tigers were too close to extinction

Reasons for Tigers at risk of extinction:

Habitat loss
Tigers lost 93% of their natural habitat due to the expansion of cities and agriculture by humans.
Fewer tigers can survive in small, scattered islands of habitat. These small islands of habitat also make tigers more vulnerable to poaching.

Human wildlife conflict
The illegal trade in tigers - it was banned in 1987 - is thought to be worth £11billion a year, amid a boom in demand from wealthy businessmen who see tiger skins and bones as a status symbol.

Three subspecies have already gone extinct, Bali (1940s), Caspian and Javan (both 1970s), while no critically endangered South China tiger has been seen for a number of years, and it is feared it might too be extinct.

How can we help?

Greenpeace suggest that we can look for forest-friendly products and be aware of 'dirty' palm oil in a bid to help the environment and protect tigers.

There have been some local stories about tigers recently though! Our very own Marwell Zoo have welcomed three Amar tiger cubs to the world, that you can now go and visit!

It has been 12 years since the zoo has bred Amur tigers and this is the first successful litter for Milla and Bagai – the father.  The Siberian Tiger - also known as the Amur Tiger - is still under threat due to poaching. The species only lives in the wild in two countries, Russia and China, but has now been given protected status in both. The total population of Amur Tigers living in the wild is estimated to be 360.

See more pictures of the new cubs here.

We are having a tiger themed day in the office today to celebrate tigers and to raise awareness for their plight. Get involved on Twitter with the hashtag #internationaltigerday