How the Tiger Lost Its Stripes

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9780151002795: How the Tiger Lost Its Stripes

"The tiger is in no danger of extinction." With that surprising statement begins this in-depth look at the endangerment of one of the most majestic and elusive animals still to roam the planet. But if the tiger is in no danger of extinction, then isn't a book on its endangerment an oxymoron? No, not if we consider that although we will be able to see tigers in any number of captive circumstances - circuses, zoos, animal parks - events conspire to eliminate the few remaining "pure" species of tiger from their wild habitats. Working from firsthand interviews with tiger conservationists in zoos and biologists in the wild, with practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine making a living with ground tiger bone, with scientists steeped in the politics of global animal conservation, journalist Meacham offers a compelling examination of how the tiger's fate is being played out both on an international and a local scale. Exploring the role of captive breeding programs that debate the possibility of reintroducing the tiger to the wild, discussing the differences between conservation and preservation, weighing the demerits of eco-imperialism and the merits of eco-tourism, Meacham presents us with the most balanced view yet on the tiger and leads us to the major questions: Can the tiger survive in its natural surroundings? What is "wild" in a world where human influence extends to the atomic level? And, most important, what is the value of wildness?

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From the Author:

BBC Wildlife magazine reviewed the book as follows,
Meacham is an intelligent journalist: shrewd, erudite and objective. He looks at the circus that has grown out of tiger conservation with a cool eye... Meacham doesn't pretend to be a Schaller. He has only ever seen one tiger in the wild and, indeed, this is not a book about tigers. But if you don't know the story and you are interested in the politics of conservation, this is for you.

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