Sub-species of extinct Caspian tigers will be reintroduced in Kazakhstan

Hey readers! Did you know that the Caspian tigers were one of the world’s largest felines? Sadly, these giant tigers went extinct in the mid 1990s due to the habitat loss and hunting. Scientists and researchers are hopeful that the extinct tigers species could be revived in Kazakhstan.

Two Caspian tigers, now extinct (Wiki Commons)

Caspian tigers inhabited the territories of Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, Mongolia, and Central Asia. The launch of large irrigation and agricultural conversion projects in the former Soviet Union led to the destruction of tugay woodlands, the natural habitat of the Caspian tigers. Another factor that caused its extinction was hunting.

Amur tigers (Source: Flickr)

Ever since Caspian tigers disappeared, scientists have tried to revive the extinct species. They found out that the Amur tiger is a subspecies related to the extinct Caspian tiger. According to studies, Caspian and Amur tigers were almost identical in their genetic structure. Next step was to identify a region that could potentially support a population of nearly a hundred tigers within the next five decades. And guess what, such region was found in Kazakhstan!

Mikhail Paltsyn, the author of a new study on the topic, published in the journal Biological Conservation, says that there are two habitat patches in Kazakhstan that could be suitable for tiger re-establishment: the Ili river delta, and adjacent southern coast of Balkhash Lake.

So there you go, now you know that Kazakhstan’s unique climate could help to revive one of the most beautiful species of big cats. Let’s hope that this project will be successful and the Caspian tigers will be revived!