November 16th, 2010
03:35 PM ET

Hunters nabbed with slain, endangered Siberian tiger

Amur tigers, like this one at the Kiev Zoo in Ukraine, are endangered in the wild.

A rare Amur tiger – one of 300 to 400 estimated to remain in the wild - was killed by poachers near Vladivostok, Russia, an animal rescue group said Tuesday.

The Siberian tiger was found by an International Fund for Animal Welfare anti-poaching patrol in Primorye Province, according to an IFAW news release.

The group says the area (which includes parts of China and North Korea) is home to the last of the wild Amur tigers, which was on the brink of extinction in the 1940s with only 40 remaining worldwide before a vigorous conservation effort.

Four suspected poachers caught with the dead, 5-year-old male tiger were arrested by rangers from the Khasan district of the province, IFAW said. One of the hunters had been injured by the big cat and required hospitalization.

If convicted, the hunters face a maximum penalty of three years in prison and a $20,000 fine, IFAW said.

"We can't save the tigers unless we combat rampant poaching, which is the single greatest threat to the survival of this species," the group’s director, Masha Vorontsova, said.

Governments of the 13 so-called tiger range countries will meet in St. Petersburg, Russia, next week to come up with a plan to save tigers from extinction. Through the St. Petersburg Tiger Summit, which begins Sunday, the governments hope to double the wild tiger population in the next dozen years.

The blackmarket for tiger products was highlighted last month when 25 suspected traffickers in tiger body parts were arrested in a six-country INTERPOL sting. More than 110 pounds of tiger bone – including the animals’  skulls and skeletons – were confiscated.

Chinese tiger-breeding centers have proposed creating tiger farms to cull the animals' body parts, thereby diminishing demand for the products and lessening the chances they might be hunted in the wild. The idea has met with resistance from environmental groups.

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Filed under: Animals • China • Crime • Environment • North Korea • Russia
soundoff (351 Responses)
  1. ask2wice

    There is no such thing as extinction any more! Not with cloning!!!

    November 17, 2010 at 1:24 am | Report abuse |
  2. yin tuang

    I like Frosted Flakes. They're grrrrrreat!

    November 17, 2010 at 4:36 am | Report abuse |
  3. jw

    this makes me sad.......why would anyone want to kill such a beautiful creature.....simply craven.....what is wrong with people?????

    November 17, 2010 at 7:32 am | Report abuse |
  4. carol

    A thousand people get murdered every day and CNN makes the killing of a tiger a top story. It's inevitable that certain animals will go extinct, there just isn't room for us and them on this world. It's not as if any of you comdemning the poachers have actually seen any of those tigers in the wild or benefited one way or ther from their existance. Closest you have come to a tiger when you read Calvin and Hobbes. I'm not saying we go out of our way to hasten the extinctions, but the amount of money and effort spent for prolonging the process for species that don't have a use for us is a waste.

    November 17, 2010 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
    • populationcontrol

      I still think it would be best if humans were hunted to extinction.The planet would be far better off.And with your comment I guess the first 1 culled would have to be you

      November 17, 2010 at 8:06 am | Report abuse |
  5. KR

    Did you know that the highest number of wild tiger population is about 2500. the bengal tigers are the most populous.
    But USA alone had about 10,000 to 15,000 tigers as domestic pets!!!!!!
    What do we have to say about ourselves??

    November 17, 2010 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Richard

      Says that they are better off as pets in American than as dinner or quack medicine in Asia. Pretty soon (thanks to the rotten Chinese) all there will be are animals in zoos and living as private pets. Maybe we should start culling all their pandas and see how they like it?

      November 17, 2010 at 8:35 am | Report abuse |
  6. coffeebean02

    The punishment should fit the crime...release the five poachers...let them run for them down and kill them...feed the human organs to the tigers. All is well in the world of karma.

    November 17, 2010 at 8:01 am | Report abuse |
  7. Eric

    This article needs to be corrected – the headline says "hunters" killed the tiger, while the body is correct is saying "poachers" – there is a big difference between hunting and poaching. Poaching, not hunting, leads to the endangerment and extinction of species. Hunting is the best conservation tool there is for game animals – it places value on the animals that would otherwise not be there. In Southeast Asia, for example, rural farmers place the value of the tiger below that of feral hogs. Another little known fact is that SCI (Safari Club International) and the Professional Hunters Association of Africa were the ones the lobbied for and got the ban on Elephant Ivory Trade in the 1970's – it wasn't the African governments, which were at the time, and some still are, complicit in the illegal trade of ivory.

    November 17, 2010 at 8:09 am | Report abuse |
  8. Shady

    Humans forget that we are just animals! We have the highest functioning brains on the planet and that makes us responsible for this planet and everything on it. You want to poach another animal go out there and kill it with your bare hands, no guns no knives or snares or traps. Humans feel so much for the loss of life for other humans this is sickening, we are just another animal amongst animals. Penalty for killing the Amur Tiger, those animals(poachers) should be placed in a pit with an Amur tiger and told,"now go get your Tiger"! Put it all on pay per view and give the proceeds to the rescue foundation for the Amur tiger.

    November 17, 2010 at 8:11 am | Report abuse |
  9. warsteiner

    The Russian mob books safari hunts for customers all over the world

    November 17, 2010 at 8:14 am | Report abuse |
  10. Leonard

    How come they don't have poachers for poachers...use long range sniper rife w/scope...600 yards out...fresh kill for the tigers to munch on.

    November 17, 2010 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
  11. Gary

    F*** China!

    November 17, 2010 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
  12. Richard

    Chinese are denuding all of Asia of its wildlife. All in the idiotic belief that eating pieces of these creatures will make them lucky, or grow their tiny d-s longer.

    November 17, 2010 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
  13. Joe Pa

    Tigers love pepper. They hate cinnamon.

    November 17, 2010 at 8:28 am | Report abuse |
  14. cavemanstyle

    IF YOU DON'T HUNT FOR FOOD, THEN DON'T HUNT AT ALL.. You pouchers out there think that you're all that and a bag of chips with a gun. You think it takes great skill to point a gun at an animal and kill it? .. It doesn't.. it's a cowardly and selfish act that takes NO SKILL at all..You're not supposed to kill an animal that you're not going to eat, and if you're doing it for money, you're even more idiotic that I thought. That's my message to all hunters that kill animals and don't eat them. No skill, no brain, and no respect... I hope the rangers tie you to a tree and give you the same fate as the animal you shot.

    November 17, 2010 at 8:33 am | Report abuse |
  15. Joseph D


    November 17, 2010 at 8:35 am | Report abuse |
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