Q: Do we have any scientific data to show if tigers bred in captivity can be successfully relocated in the wild ?

Asked by Dr. Anand T. Pereira

Answer from Shekar Dattatri, Conservation India

There is plenty of evidence to show that releasing hand-reared, captive bred large carnivores into the wild is generally unsuccessful for several reasons. Please go through this paper for a full explanation: Killer Cats – The Dangers of Captive Carnivore Introductions.

To quote from the paper:

“The only way to recover and increase big cat populations is to stop poaching of the cats and their prey…thereafter numbers will bounce back in a decade or two to reach potential carrying capacity; all this is hard work and there are no shortcuts…but predator recoveries in many Indian reserves show this is possible.”

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