The Politics of Saving the Tigers
Establishing more preserved lands with wild tiger corridors is vital, and fortunately the prime minister of India Narenda Modi is proud of the country's commitment to efforts to create more preserves and increase tiger populations. In a recent tweet he applauded the 53 tiger reserves in the country and noted that the tiger census of 2018 showed an increase in the population.
The 20 Ways to SAVE Wild Tigers chapter features the Wildlife Conservation Society’s wild tiger field work and proactively addresses how to protect the 3,900 tigers remaining in the wild, especially in India. Dr. Ullas Karanth, WCS Science Asia, has an incredible lifetime commitment to saving wild tigers and continues to work towards increasing the wild tiger population through his team’s dedication.
“Tigers are not a lost cause. Strict protection of key source population, reductions in human demands and conflicts through fair and generous village resettlement projects and application of best science for monitoring and managing tiger populations can bring tigers back. WCS’ tiger conservation model shows it can be done with field work in India.”
Check out some amazing footage from WCS Thailand, of tigers enjoying a hot tub-sized water hole in the Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary.
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Year of the Tiger 2022
The 20 Ways To Track A Tiger e-book - An evolutionary story
When people are asked to name their greatest wish, the answer is most often "To Save the World." Another response high on the list of wishes: "To go on a Safari." Carol J. Amore, a woman who set a lifetime of high goals for herself, combined those two wishes -- by going on a multi-year safari to film a family of tigers in the Indian jungle to make a compelling story for a documentary film and print/e-books to inspire global tiger conservation seen by people around the world.
Carol is an award-winning wildlife filmmaker-photographer-producer who had an early combined interest in adventure photography/filming as well as clinical psychology/organization development. Her clinical skills helped her engage many people and their cultures while in different countries. While working for corporations in executive development, Carol used her visual communication skills when coaching clients and continued to pursue her keen interest in wildlife explorations.
African big cats, Arctic polar bears and American grizzly bears photo/film expeditions were where she honed her field experience to handle tracking using a full range of camera gear to gain the sharpest images while in tough terrain. "I have always believed that the human soul never thinks without a picture, and that the filmmaker can help preserve wildlife through finding those great images that enrich the lives of others."
Soon her company, Wildlife Worlds - Adventures in Nature Productions was born, and Carol would launch an immense project to bring attention to one of the world's most iconic and beautiful animals -- the endangered wild Bengal tiger. The venture would cost her much time, money, blood, sweat and tears, but like many other pioneering conservationist women before her (Fossey, Goodall, Bryant, et al), she saw the determination of poachers and other forces working against the wild animals, and was just as determined to fight for their survival with only 3900 tigers remaining in the wild.
Her efforts paid off, resulting in a multi-year filming expedition in the 173 square-mile Bandhavgarth Tiger Reserve in the Vindhya Hills of India. Soon she would turn that experience and hard-earned footage into an award-winning book, 20 Ways To Track A Tiger, and an award-winning film, TIGERS - Tracking a Legend which was broadcast (in English & Hindi) by Discovery Networks International in India and Asia.
"I knew it would be difficult to film in the Indian jungle, but I had acquired the necessary film expedition skills to do it and was willing to spend the time it would take to make the right local forest official arrangements and find the right mahavat." The mahavat is the elephant/tiger tracker guide who communicates with his elephant through the touch of his bare feet behind the top of its large ears and verbal commands in Hindi, guiding the elephant through thick jungle to find the tigers in their camouflaged habitat.
In fact, the first chapter of the 20 Ways to "Track a Tiger" in her book is "Partner with Elephant Mahavats," and she describes in detail the amazing experience of riding atop the massive elephant, and about the great bond the elephants have with their mahavats. "Tigers are habituated to the elephants in the jungle, and we could not have done this without them. The mahavat, elephant and tiger have a strange and wonderful partnership in the reserve -- one upon which their mutual survival depends."
She tells of the physically challenging schedule of early morning lifting film/photo camera equipment, and riding on the elephant's back for the long, hot day (often 115°F), tracking and filming, her face and arms smeared with thick dust instead of sunscreen (no artificial scents allowed). The long evenings of screening the day's video, discussing the technical challenges, and evaluating how well the images captured the tigress and cubs' story were vital.
Carol knows how much we humans love cats of all kinds, and also how much we love the notion of wildness and preserving nature in its untamed state. She has combined her passion for the wild tigers with her photography and filmmaking skills and brought us an intimate portrait that compels us to care even more. The two greatest threats to the tiger's existence -- poaching and habitat loss -- continue, and especially during these pandemic times, have gotten worse. That is why she hasn't stopped exploring and creating new ways to get her message out to more people around the world.
From that Tiger Global conservation goal there has been an evolutionary sequence of films and print/e-book publications. The TIGERS - Tracking a Legend film came first and won the International Wildlife Film Festival for best cinematography. As The 20 Ways To Track A Tiger book came out in 2003 and won the IPPY gold medal in the Animals category in our Independent Publisher Book Awards in 2004. Since then, Carol used her experience at integrating new media technologies to enhance the story-telling experience to create TIGERS Experience/Exhibition, a 5,000 square foot with over 20 interactive exhibits she designed for science and natural history museums/zoos for fun family learning adventures about wild tigers and conserving their Asian territories.
Carol also developed a ZOOM TIGERS & TEAMWORK simulation to engage the entire team using dynamic ZOOM break-out team experiences with professional facilitation to develop the team’s ability to influence change, manage differences and encourage innovation. It motivates teams to increase their communication with each other to achieve a higher level of cross-functional team collaboration and positively impact their business results.
The pandemic got in the way, putting the TIGERS Experience/exhibition into storage while searching for a permanent exhibition location to reach more people. The TIGERS outreach continues. So, she has further created deluxe HD & lite e-book versions that takes the reader right into the tiger’s territory, identifying the tracks of the tiger, listening to wildlife alarm calls, predicting the travels of the tigress, and anticipating her hunting techniques. Students, scouts and families will feel their senses awakened as if traveling on top the elephant during their own wild tiger expedition, using the tiger tracker skills they've learned through the exciting photographs and story-driven writing. The Filmmaker’s Notes section takes the adventure to a new level of discovery by learning about the tigress and her cubs' special sight, hearing, hunting and physical characteristics. Footage from the award-winning TIGERS - Tracking a Legend film is also woven within the e-book.
But wait, there's more! Carol is also producing an interactive multi-level computer game, TIGERS - Wildlife Photo Safari, using new technologies to enhance gamers' experiences and to motivate them to explore wildlife throughout the world using their cameras. Gamers can earn on-screen points/rewards for capturing wildlife photos day and night looking for tiger cub predators (male tigers, leopards, wolves, pythons, etc.) that could ambush them at various waterholes, the caves, jungle cliffs and open meadows where the tiger cubs live and play. Many other scenes present gamer challenges.
Building on Carol's leadership development consulting practice, she wrote a new e-book for release in 2/2022, Leading Change - Global Crisis & Complexities, which contains a leadership self-assessment and development tool that inspires real change for the leader, team colleagues and customers. The leader begins the self-assessment process by identifying a current high priority business challenge in which he or she is accountable to lead this change. Some global change challenges might include pandemic safety, cyber business risks, global supply chain, technology transformation, financial risks, social media, environmental sustainability/conservation etc. After the business challenge is identified, the business leader assesses their leadership capabilities by comparing their job skill importance to their skill effectiveness to address any gaps. As part of a collaborative Action-Learning/Development Process the leader further networks with cross-functional peers to identify innovative solutions to the challenge.
The writing of this story just before the New Year causes reflection about resolutions and change for the better. Let's hope many of us resolve "To Save the World," and to realize that we can't stand by and allow injustices like endangered animal poaching and illegal wild animal trade to continue. For Carol Amore, actions speak louder than words when it comes to saving wildlife -- her books and films are firm proof of that. Her passion is wildlife, and her purpose to work towards meaningful conservation solutions for endangered wild animals comes through loud and clear.
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Learn more through 2022 Carol Amore's Podcasts available at www.tigerstracking.com