Choki Wangmo

Transboundary partnership between the Royal Manas National Park in Bhutan and Manas Tiger Reserve in India, known as the Transboundary Manas Conservation Area or TraMCA, has been recognised with a tiger conservation excellence award.

The award marks the 10th anniversary since the 13 nations set an ambitious goal to double the wild tiger population by 2022 through the strategy TX2.

The awards include a financial grant to assist ongoing conservation.

Bhutan Manas increased the tiger population from 12 in 2008 to 26 in 2018. The tiger population increase in the Indian Manas was 25 in 2018 from nine in 2010.

“Camera trap studies in Bhutan have also shown that tiger prey, including gaur and sambar, are abundant in the protected area,” stated the press release from the World Wildlife Fund Bhutan.

With 65 individuals as of 2018, Pilibhit Tiger Reserve in India has won the inaugural TX2 Award for doubling its population of wild tigers since 2010. The reserve is a source site for tigers and important for connectivity across the vast Terai Arc Landscape of India and Nepal.

A conservation tool that sets standards to manage target species such as tigers, CA|TS is being implemented across all three winning sites.

Conservation Director of WWF-Bhutan, Vijay Moktan, congratulated the Manas Park and the forest department and acknowledged the frontline rangers, community leaders, local communities, donors, and partners for their pledges and resolute actions.

“This leaves no doubt that Manas Park is as fit and healthy as before,” he said.

The awards are presented by the Conservation Assured Tiger Standards, IUCN’s Integrated Tiger Habitat Conservation Programme, Global Tiger Forum, United Nations Development Programme, The Lion’s Share, and WWF Tigers Alive Initiative.

Several stakeholders from India, Bhutan, relevant agencies joined the award ceremony virtually.