Anti-Poaching Activities in Northern Primorye 2010-11
This project is fully-funded by Dreamworld
Primorye includes the most biologically diverse and unique ecosystems in Russia, retaining the last populations of wild Amur (Siberian) tigers and Amur leopards (only approximately 30 remain in the wild).
Tiger numbers have been stable, but recent survey data shows that the formerly stable Amur population is now declining as a result of increased poaching of both tigers and prey species.
In 2010 Phoenix supported the Bikin team of Primorsky Game and Rare Species Department headed by Sergei Kuznetsov. This three-man Bikin team was specially trained to conduct anti-poaching patrols in three northern districts of Primorye, namely Krasnoarmeisky, Pozharsky and Terneisky.
That year, the team documented 60 violations in hunting, fishing and logging and confiscated and handed over 21 weapons to the police. It also discovered and confiscated a variety of wildlife products and poaching devices, initiated two criminal proceedings and saw two people convicted.
Anti-poaching activities in 2011 focus on four protected areas of Primorye, namely Kedrovaya Pad Nature Reserve, Lazovsky Nature Reserve, Zov Tigra National Park and Sikhote-Alinsky Biosphere Nature Reserve. Environmental education forms a key part of the project, promoting awareness particularly among those living within the tiger habitat.
Primorsky Game and Rare Species Department is empowered to monitor the usage, management, regulation and conservation of game species, as well as rare and endangered animals in Primorye outside the protected areas.
Also, the Department has rights to conduct a state census of wild animals, state monitoring and surveys and handle human-predator conflicts in Primorye. It controls the hunting leases, regulates the populations of hunting species and issues the hunting licenses.
Within the Department there are wildlife managers/inspectors (okhotoved in Russian) that are responsible for the hunting regulations and control in their territory. They carry out monitoring of hunting species and rare and endangered species (and regulate the population, control implementation of hunting rules and do some education and outreach).
Anti-poaching teams have shown good results of their work, but the Russian Government and regional authorities do not allocate enough funds for the Department to operate in full. Money from the federal and regional budgets covers only the Department’s basic need (salaries of employees and a few other miscellaneous expenses). There is a lack of funds for fuel, spare and repair parts, field expenditures and equipment which will be supported by this project.
In addition to the anti-poaching teams, Phoenix also supports the very popular Annual Tiger Day Festivals throughout Northern Primorye, which celebrate the Amur tiger with a carnival procession, various theatrical performances, games, quizzes and competitions. Each year Phoenix announces an art contest devoted to the Amur tiger and leopard, publishing a calendar from the entries.
This is a fully funded project.