Population status of the Indochinese tiger (Panthera tigris cobetti) and density of the three primary ungulate prey species in Shangyong Nature Reserve, Xishuangbanna, China

Limin Feng, Lifan Wang, Bin Wang, James L.D. Smith, Li Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Limited information exists on the population status of wild Indochinese tigers (Panthera tigris cobetti) in China. This research reports the first field survey on the Indochinese tiger and its prey base in southern Yunnan of China. Pugmark identification was used to estimate the population size of tigers during the survey in Shangyong Nature Reserve of Xishuangbanna, Yunnan province. The pellet-plot counting method was used to estimate the density of three ungulate species, including sambar deer, wild boar and barking deer, which are the major prey species of tigers in the region. Results indicate that at least 3 different individuals, a male and two female Indochinese tigers, occupied Shangyong during the period from 2004 to 2009. Our results also demonstrated that density of ungulates was high in Shangyong Nature Reserve, especially for sambar deer, which is the key prey species for tigers. Population densities were estimated as follows: sambar deer, 7.63 (7.40~9.23) individuals/km2; barking deer, 17.39 (11.33~24.94) individuals/km2; wild boar, 10.26 (7.69~14.51) individuals/km2. The total prey biomass in Shangyong was approximately 1715.74 kg/km2. The results suggested that preseerving a healthy prey population is extremely important to the survival and future recovery of tigers in China.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)308-318
Number of pages11
JournalActa Theriologica Sinica
Volume33
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1 2013

Keywords

  • Conservation
  • Panthera tigris cobbeti
  • Prey population density
  • Xishuangbanna

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