History of Tiger Reserves in India
When the tiger population was in danger, the Government of India tried to locate tigers in the dark areas of forests. Project Tiger was launched by the government in 1973 to save the endangered species called tigers. During 1973-1974, there were nine reserves in India. At present, there are 50 tiger reserves in India.
Management and Aim of Tiger Reserves in India
The state forestry departments handle about 53,547.5 square kilometers of the declared reserves in India. These reserves are administered under Project Tiger. Tiger reserves in India aim to maintain viable populations of Bengal tigers, which are dependent on protection. However, poaching and surreptitious killing of tigers is a major setback and a serious hindrance to the protective measures executed in the tiger reserves. Tiger reserves in India are upgraded and revamped at appropriate times, with the introduction of necessary inputs.
Different Tiger Reserves in India
Some of the much-visited and much-admired tiger reserves in India include the Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve, Sunderbans Tiger Reserve, Kaziranga National Park, Kanha Tiger Reserve, Periyar Tiger Reserve and Ranthambore National Park. Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve is situated in three districts of Uttarakhand namely, Pauri, Nainital and Almora. It is spread over an area of about 1288.31 square kilometers. Royal Bengal tigers and Asiatic elephants are the most popular animals of the reserve. Sunderbans Tiger Reserve is situated in the state of West Bengal. It is spread over an area of about 2,585 square kilometers. It has the distinction of being the largest estuarine sanctuary in the world. Littoral forest in Sunderbans Tiger Reserve is the ecological habitat of tigers. Apart from tigers, aquatic and semi-aquatic animals are found in Sunderbans Tiger Reserve. A national park namely, Kaziranga National Park in Golaghat and Nagaon districts of Assam was designated as a tiger reserve in 2006. It has the highest density of tigers among the protected areas in the world. Kanha Tiger Reserve is located in Madhya Pradesh. It is spread over an area of about 940 square kilometers. It serves as a home to Bengal tiger, Indian leopards, sloth bear, barasingha, etc. Periyar Tiger Reserve is situated in Thekkady, Kerala. It is spread over an area of about 925 square kilometers. It is a home to rare, endemic and endangered flora and fauna. Ranthambore National Park is situated in Sawai Madhopur in Rajasthan. Project Tiger was initiated in the park in 1973. Accordingly, an area of about 60 square miles was declared as a tiger sanctuary.
Other Tiger Reserves in India
Some of the other tiger reserves in India are Buxa Tiger Reserve, Valmiki Tiger Reserve, Melghat Tiger Reserve and Anamalai Tiger Reserve.