In 2003, China sent two South China tigers to Africa to be wild. Why have they not been released into the wild?
The African Wild South China tiger is a unique tiger in China, but unfortunately, in the last century, people wrongly classified it as a “pest”, resulting in their population decline, the wild environment is no trace of them.Until we realize the importance of the tiger, wild south China tiger had disappeared from people’s horizons, but also retain their genes in the zoo, but years of captivity life, let the south China tiger in the zoo have lost the former days the wind of “king”, became a waiting for people to hurl food to feed the big cats.In this context, a woman named quan Li proposed to rewilder the South China tiger in South Africa. Since 2003, five south China tiger cubs have been sent from Chinese zoos to South Africa for rewilding.When it comes to rewilding in South Africa, the south China tiger is not actually released into the wild to hunt for prey, but is still kept in captivity. However, the captivity condition is grass instead of cement ground, and the field is relatively large.Just two South China tiger cubs, named Guotai and Hope, arrived, but three more arrived.Since the young tigers have lived in the zoo since childhood, they have never touched the grass and dare not even step on the grass. Under the patient guidance of the staff, the two young tigers began to play on the grass.In the process of rewilding, training their hunting ability is the most important step for the staff. In order to improve their hunting efficiency, the staff cut the wings of the chickens and threw them into the training ground for the young tigers to kill. Unfortunately, at the beginning, the tigers were afraid of the chickens and did not dare to chase them, but were chased by the chickens.Later, the small tiger’s fierce beast gene began to wake up, began to slowly contact the chicken, and kill each other, but it took a very long time, and kill success, the small tiger still dare not eat chicken, still waiting for people to feed.Under the patient guidance of the staff, the young tigers went from killing chickens on their own to gradually eating their own food, and then training their ability to kill large animals.Large herbivores are very alert, they also look around when they’re foraging, and if they see danger, they run for it.Although tigers are larger in size, wild tigers mainly adopt ambush strategy when killing prey, that is, hiding in the dark, waiting for prey to approach them, and then strangling them to death.This will make it quick.This strategy is actually related to the habitat of the tiger. The tiger is the king of the forest ecosystem. In the forest environment, the forest is high and the trees are deep, and the vision is not wide.Unlike lions, which live in an environment with a wide field of vision, lions can see their prey even if it runs away.South Africa is a savanna environment, and these tigers don’t know how to hunt large herbivores, so things don’t go well at first, until they get the hang of an antelope, they seem to get the hang of it, and then they get the hang of it.Africa’s Tiger Valley is rewilding tigers on the one hand and breeding them on the other.The thing to remember is that there are so few individuals in the south China tiger population that if there are not enough individuals, even if rewilding succeeds, they could still go extinct.But the tiger after running wild, wild, reproductive capacity is better than a long stay in the tiger in the zoo is better, as of August 2013, protect Chinese tiger gene website announced the news of the third generation of the south China tiger, tiger tiger valley in South Africa was transformed from the initial 5 only 15 only, but then there is no more news in South Africa’s wild south China tiger project,The tigers were due to return home in 2008, but have yet to return.Is rewilding the South China Tiger really possible?In fact, the project was opposed from the very beginning by experts who believed that a sustainable tiger population should have at least 60 tigers and no fewer than 18 females.When China started, there were only six wild South China tigers, two males and four females, meaning that the inbreeding coefficient of south China tigers was high and the population was still very dangerous.Studies have found that wild tigers are naturally afraid of people and will take the initiative to avoid people when they see them. For example, in northeast China, where the density of northeast tigers is high, people will come across Siberian tigers from time to time, but even when they come across Siberian tigers, the Siberian tigers do not take the initiative to attack people.Tigers that have been exposed to humans for a long time do not fear people, but rather associate them with food, as humans often feed them.So once tigers escape from zoos, the threat to humans is much higher than that of wild tigers.This is why tigers cannot be released into the wild if they come into frequent contact with humans during the process of rewilding. Otherwise, they may approach nearby villagers and cause panic.Wild tigers measures taken by the people is currently, generation of good wild tigers in captivity in the natural environment, let mother tiger in the environment with the cubs survive, cubs from far away from the humans, and can follow the mother tiger hunting skills, wait until grew up tiger baby naturally spread into the wild, the tiger the second generation or tiger three generations before it can be released into the wild.”Wandashan No.1″, which strayed into the village, grew up under the leadership of the tiger mother. Since it had never been in contact with human beings since childhood, it did not attack human beings after straying into the village, but the stress reaction caused by people’s watching caused it to accidentally hurt the farmer woman in the process of escape.In fact, the reason why the South China tiger is difficult to be released into the mountains is not because of poor rewilding training, but because there is no suitable habitat in the wild.The South China Tiger is the top predator, and its demand for habitat is very large, requiring that there are wild boar, roe deer, deer and other herbivores in the habitat, and the number should not be too small.When there is more food, they need less habitat;When food is scarce, their habitat is demanding.South China tigers, on the other hand, are solitary creatures. One of them needs at least 70 square kilometers of forest. The larger the habitat area, the more it can accommodate the south China tiger population, the less likely it is to inbreed.However, nowadays, the habitat of south China tigers has been cut by roads, villages and farmland, and the habitat is fragmented. Even if they are released into the wild, the fragmented habitat will hinder their reproduction, which is not conducive to long-term reproduction.Fortunately, the plight of the south China tiger has been noticed by people, and not just the south China tiger, tiger is also facing such a problem, now we are already gradually changes their habitats, such as: in order to establish the national park, they protect tigers food, clean up the reserves of small hydropower stations, etc., for the tigers to build ecological corridor, connection broken habitats.With the experience of protecting the Amur tiger, WE believe that we can also do a good job in protecting the wild habitat of the South China Tiger. Perhaps one day, the South China tiger can also roar in the wild mountains.