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We began the 20th century with over 100,000 wild tigers. We ended the same century with less than 4,000. Hunted, poached, encroached upon and then slaughtered, the wild tigers of Asia are in trouble and face extinction.
But there is a secret number few know: the shocking number of the hidden tigers of North America. There are between 5,000 to 10,000 hidden tigers living in the backyards, roadside attractions, theme parks, zoos, and sanctuaries of The United States alone. Under-regulated, over-bred and often mistreated, these apex predators are born into a lifetime of captivity with a surprising and unintended consequence: their caged existence helps undermine the already difficult task of saving their wild counterparts.
The Hidden Tiger is a global exposé revealing the links between captive tigers and the wild tigers’ possible extinction.
The Hidden Tiger is about the true Kings and Queens of Tiger Conservation.
Traveling across the globe, Rescue Docs Films has uncovered alarming realities:
- In the US, there are an estimated 5,000 to 10,000 tigers being held at roadside attractions and by private owners, yet fewer than 4,000 tigers remain in the wild.
- Tigers can be purchased in many US states legally for less than $500.
- The nearly $8 billion trade in wildlife parts is the third most profitable on the black market after the drug and weapons trade.
- US captive tigers are being sold on the black market and at least 10 million Americans believe in the medicinal use of tiger body parts though laws have fluctuated in recent years. The efficacy of tiger parts as medicine has been almost universally debunked.
- Tigers are being exploited for entertainment in circuses and in the mainstream media.
- First responders are at risk and not trained to handle attacks, escapes, and abuses involving tigers.
- Sanctuaries struggle to raise funds as they provide care for the once abused and neglected tigers that have fallen through the cracks of weak regulations.
With The Hidden Tiger, Rescue Doc Films also explores promising solutions with the current conservation efforts being made in Asia and the push to enact responsible federal legislation in America. With work in India, Nepal, the UK and across the United States, Rescue Doc Films has worked to connect major experts and players in the world of tigers to give tigers a voice.