Welcoming Tiger back home
From 2011 to 2013, the Prince Albert II Foundation supported WWF International in its initiative to preserve the Amur Tiger in the temperate forest of the Amur (Heilong) river basin, on the Russian borders. The protected area now extends over 96,000 hectares, poaching is actively combated through awareness-raising in local communities and the number of prey (ungulates) in the zone has risen (species reintroduction and elimination of traps).
The second phase of the programme, running from 2016 to 2019, is concerned with the extension of the protected areas (to reach 200,000 hectares) in China, and aims to work in co-operation with Russia's protected areas in order to reduce poaching and promote freedom of movement for the species. Local awareness campaigns are conducted via communication and education programmes, to involve the indigenous peoples and find local subsistence methods that are not harmful to forest conservation. The fight against poaching and the restoration of prey remain the main objectives building upon the achievements of phase one.
The overall aim of the programme is to "restore, maintain and expand the population of big cats of Asia and their habitats from here to 2020 in the Amur (Heilong) ecoregion".