Final protocol on Phase-IV tiger monitoring
The Tiger Task Force constituted by the National Board for Wildlife (2005) has endorsed the revised methodology / approach propounded by the erstwhile Project Tiger Directorate (now the National Tiger Conservation Authority-NTCA) and the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) for country level estimation / monitoring of tiger / prey status and its habitat. The said approach, interalia, comprises of the following: Country level assessment of tiger, co-predators, prey and habitat in 17 tiger States once in every four years using the double sampling method having three phases (Phase-I: Spatial mapping and monitoring of tigers, prey and habitat; Phase-II: Assimilation of spatial and attribute data; and Phase-III: Estimating the population of tigers and its prey). Intensive monitoring of tiger source populations in tiger reserves and protected areas in each tiger landscape complex (Phase-IV), and maintenance of a centralized photo-database of tigers at NTCA obtained from camera traps deployed across all tiger reserves. Routine management-oriented monitoring, which, inter alia, comprises of regular monitoring of tiger signs at beat level, which can potentially be integrated with monitoring of law enforcement and patrolling. Survey Design (for all tiger reserves except Sundarbans) for spatially explicit mark-recapture study involving research workers / scientists.