The number of tigers in the wild at the beginning of the twentieth century was estimated to be 100,000.
Now, at the beginning of the twenty-first century'”in a mere matter of 100 years'”their numbers have been reduced to less than 3,200, according to the WWF.
With less than 3,200 tigers alive in the wild throughout the world, the WWF estimates that the tiger could go extinct within a few decades.
During these one hundred years, several species of tigers have already gone extinct. These now-extinct species include the Javan tiger, the Caspian tiger, and the Bali tiger.
According to the DailyTech.com article 'Report: Tigers Near Extinction, Only 3,200 Left as Poaching Continues,' Sybille Klenzendorb, who is the director of the U.S. Species Conservation program for WWF, states, "There is a real threat of losing this magnificent animal forever in our lifetime. This would be like losing the stars in the sky. Three tiger subspecies have gone extinct, and another, the South China tiger, has not been seen in the wild in 25 years."
The primary reason why tigers are diminishing in numbers throughout the world is because of illegal trade of tigers and, thus, the poaching of tigers.
Within the DailyTech article, Keshav S. Varma, who is the program director of the World Bank's Global Tiger Initiative, states, "Unless we really crack down on illegal trade and poachers, tigers in the wild have very little chance. If the tigers disappear, it is an indication of a comprehensive failure.'
WWF program director Varma continues on page three.