Govt challenges claims on flawed methodology in tiger census
The government on Sunday challenged claims by sections of wildlife experts that it had used a flawed methodology for its latest tiger census and instead asserted that their study was a "theoretical iteration" on old data whose precision is "questionable".
The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA), a statutory body under the Environment Ministry on Sunday sent a clarification regarding the recent study led by Oxford University which found the Ministry's methodology flawed and said that biologists themselves have used imprecise, low-quality data to question the tiger estimation methodology. The NTCA, which had in January estimated that India had 2,226 tigers, said the issues that a team of Indian wildlife scientists had raised has "no relevance to the 2014 tiger population and status estimation". "Recently there have been some news reports in a section of media, based on the published study by Arujn Gopalaswamy and Ullas Karanth. The content of these published articles have no relevance in the context of 2014 tiger population and status estimation," NTCA said in a clarification on Sunday.
A team of scientists from University of Oxford, Indian Statistical Institute recently claimed to have exposed inherent shortcomings in the 'index-calibration' method which meant it could produce inaccurate results.