Living with tigers
Living with tigers has its challenges. Every year about 50 people die in tiger attacks in the forest, 80 livestock fall prey to hungry tigers, and up to three tigers are killed when they stray into villages. TigerTeam is empowering local people to ensure the safety of themselves, their livestock, and of the tigers.
Safe village, safe tiger
WildTeam has encouraged and supported the creation of 49 Village Tiger Response Teams to keep villages safe from tigers and tigers safe from people.
These teams are made up of hundreds of volunteers, who work together to scare tigers back into the forest and to prevent crowds of people from beating a tiger to death. Since their inception in 2008, the Village Tiger Response Teams have continued to grow and strengthen, returning many tigers safely to the forest and often going above and beyond their call of duty. On their own initiative, some of the teams are helping to reduce poaching, protect other wildlife, and have set up junior teams to mobilise the younger generation.
Good news spreads fast. More Sundarbans communities are requesting TigerTeam’s help to form their very own Village Tiger Response Teams.
Sometimes the tigers are so far inside the village they can't be scared back into the forest. In these cases, while the Village Tiger Response Team manages the crowds, our specialised emergency response team helps the Forest Department immobilise the tiger and move it to safety.
Safety in the forest
TigerTeam is working to keep people who work in the forest safe by giving safety training to vulnerable groups like honey collectors. We are also running an emergency response boat that gives first aid and transport to people attacked by tigers inside the forest. The boat team have a very dangerous job. Sometimes they have to retrieve a body from the jaws of a tiger, risking their lives to make it safer for others and to help the grieving families.
TigerTeam’s work is a great example of why we believe that people are the solution and how we are acting fearlessly to change the game for nature.
Helping families in need
The Bangladesh government has set up a scheme to provide funds for families that have lost a loved one or livestock to tigers. The trouble is that the way to get these funds involves a lot of paperwork; which is difficult for local people to complete because they are sometimes illiterate or otherwise are not sure of what to do. So WildTeam is helping the families apply for the funds and training village volunteers on how to apply for these funds. So far we have helped over 130 families apply. The process takes time, so many of those applications are still waiting a decision, but at least some of these families have already received compensation.