Bhopal: Tiger census so far has been a once-in-four years activity, but now all the states will assess their tiger numbers annually. And Madhya Pradesh, which boasts of six tiger reserves, will start the process from this November.
"The tiger `assessment` would be similar to counting. However, state wildlife authorities prefer to term it as assessment," H.S. Pabla, principal chief conservator of forests (wildlife), said.
The process will take two-three months.
At present, the all-India tiger census is done once in four years.
There are 39 tiger reserves in the county while Madhya Pradesh has six -- Kanha National Park, Panna Tiger Reserve, Pench Tiger Reserve, Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve, Satpura Tiger Reserve and Ratapani Tiger Reserve.
The recent tiger census had shown a decline in the number of the big cats in the state -- from 300 to 257.
"The annual assessment of tigers will give update report of tigers every year. And if any damage is reported, then preventive measures can be taken immediately," Pabla said.
C.K. Patil, director of Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve, said: "We will use traditional methods like counting pug marks in the annual assessment, apart from setting camera traps."