Friday, June 08, 2007

Tiger nat'l park established in Russian Far East

07 Jun 2007

Moscow, Russia – A new national park has been created in the Russian Far East, following years of advocacy work by WWF and local environmental groups.

The Zov Tigra (Call of the Tiger) National Park encompasses 82,152 hectares in the forest area of the Sikhote-Alin mountain range in the far eastern Primorye region.

It is the third of 21 protected areas planned for Russia by 2010.

The park is home to abundant wildlife, including the endangered Siberian (or Amur) tiger.

In the 1940s the Siberian tiger was on the brink of extinction, with no more than 40 tigers remaining in the wild.

Thanks to vigorous anti-poaching and other conservation efforts by the Russians with support from many partners, including WWF, the tiger population recovered and has remained stable throughout the last decade with some 500 individuals.

"The main purpose of the national park is to conserve biodiversity and develop eco-tourism in the region," said Yurii Bersenev, protected areas coordinator for WWF-Russia’s Far Eastern office.

"Thanks to the positive cooperation between WWF and the Russian authorities, we were successful in establishing the park. We are happy to see this unique natural area finally getting the protection it deserves."

For further information:
Yulia Fomenko, Head of Communications
WWF-Russia, Far Eastern Branch
Tel: +7 4232 414868 index.cfm?uNewsID=105480

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