Conference in Russia Tries to Save the World's Tigers

Conservationists   and world leaders of 13 countries have  gathered  in St. Petersburg, Russia to discuss the future of tigers. India, China, Bangladesh, Indonesia and other Asian countries are among those taking part in the conference. Their  goal  is to work out a plan that will  double  the world’s tiger population by 2022, the next year of the tiger , according to   the Chinese calendar.

A  century  ago over 100,000 tigers lived in the  wildernesses  of the world; today only 3,300 are left. The  primary aim  of the conference is to  raise  money to save tigers’ living areas and  protect  them from  poachers . In the last ten years over 1,000 animals have been killed in Asia alone. Poachers are  especially  active in India and China. A British conservationist   group has found out that more and more tiger parts are being sold in Burma, Vietnam and Cambodia.  Traders  sell skins, bones, teeth of the animals.

Russia is one country that has  increased  its tiger population. In 1950 the country only had about 100 tigers, today the tiger  population  is over 500. Siberian tigers are among those that are most  endangered . About 100 are killed every year by  poachers  who smuggle   the parts to China. There they are used in Chinese medicine.

Destruction   of natural  habitats , especially forests make tigers  flee  to villages and other inhabited   areas where they get killed.  According to  experts,  breeding  places, most of which are in India, must also be  protected .

 

The World Wildlife Fund says tigers could become  extinct  by 2022 if nothing happens to save them. Countries and  environmentalist  groups have  promised  to  donate  $ 330 million to  rescue  the world’s tiger from  extinction . The United States has also contributed   money,  although  it has no tiger population of its own.

 

Siberian tiger

Siberian Tiger

 

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Words

  • according to   = as said by …
  • aim   = goal
  • although   = while
  • breed   = animals have babies
  • century   = a hundred years
  • conservationist   = someone who works hard to protect animals
  • contribute   = give, donate
  • destruction   = the act of damaging something completely
  • donate   = give money
  • double   = to become twice as much
  • endangered   = in danger
  • environmentalist   = someone who is worried about the environment and wants to protect it
  • especially   = above all
  • extinct   = die out
  • flee   = escape
  • gather   = get together
  • goal   = aim; what someone plans to do
  • habitat   = natural home of a plant or animal
  • increase   = to get bigger
  • inhabited   = a place where people live
  • poacher   = a person who illegally hunts wild animals and sells their parts
  • population   = the number of animals
  • primary   = main, most important
  • promise   = say that you will do something
  • protect   = guard, save, defend
  • raise   = collect money
  • rescue   = save
  • smuggle   = to bring into a country illegally
  • trader   = a person who buys and sells things
  • wilderness   = a large area of land that has never been settled