The Western Forest Complex in Thailand is home to the only viable population of Tigers in mainland Southeast Asia, and the country's conservation efforts have made it a stronghold for threatened species. However, three areas have been identified as critical gaps that urgently need protection.
The Tiger, the largest of all big cats, once roamed freely throughout central, eastern, and southern Asia. However, in the past century alone, rapid habitat loss and poaching have caused the populations of Tigers to drop from 100,000 to just 3,500. In addition to Tigers, the conservation sites will also protect critical habitat for Asian Elephants, whose populations have been declining for centuries. Although it is difficult to count elephants in Thailand's dense vegetation, there are estimated to be at most about 3,300 surviving today. Other at-risk, globally important species have been recorded here as well, including Asiatic Wild Dog or Dhole, Banteng, Leopard, Clouded Leopard, Sambar, Bearcat, Lar Gibbon, Sun Bear and Asiatic Black Bear. The Endangered Green Peafowl and three species of hornbill listed as Vulnerable also inhabit the reserve areas.
By protecting these areas, we can secure and connect vital missing pieces of a conservation landscape that includes national parks and wildlife sanctuaries. This will be critical for the survival of keystone species and wide-ranging species like Tigers and Asian Elephants to move safely across the land.
The designation of these protected areas by Thailand’s Department of Natural Resources will bring funding and trained personnel to enforce conservation laws and regulate destructive activities such as mining, poaching, and illegal cattle ranching. Furthermore, local community members will play a role in developing plans to address land use concerns in a way that protects both traditional forest practices and resident species. The goal is to achieve a peaceful coexistence of humans and non-human species within the protected environment.
Species at risk: 4
Acres Saved: 51
Trees Saved: 30,071
Tonnes of CO2 eq. Stored: 4,595
In collaboration with Panthera
Our local partner, Panthera, utilizes the expertise of the world’s premier cat biologists to implement global strategies for the conservation of the world’s 40 wild cat species and their ecosystems.
Representing the most comprehensive effort of its kind, Panthera partners with local and international NGOs, scientific institutions, local communities, governments around the globe and citizens who want to help ensure a future for wild cats.