Phoenix Fund

Our mission is to conserve the exceptionally rich fauna and flora of the Russian Far East, the only region where Amur tigers and leopards survive in the wild. These magnificent animals are threatened by habitat deterioration, poaching of the big cats themselves and depletion of their prey populations.
Sep 21, 2011

New home for conflict tigers

Hopefully in summer all tigers live in prosperity, hunger no longer drives them close to the settlements and we hear nothing about human-tiger conflicts. But almost every winter severe weather conditions force predators towards villages in search of easy game. Every year tiger cubs lose their mothers and become orphans. Also, tigers with injures or affected by some diseases are found near roads and human settlements. Such animals are considered conflict and most of them are doomed to death in taiga. Creation of adequate rehabilitation center is required to ensure tigers’ survival and successful release back into the wild.

Phoenix Fund went to the construction site of the first full-fledged rehabilitation center for tigers and other animals in Russia. The construction takes place in Nadezhdinsky district of Primorski krai in the forest located far from villages so that the "patients" would not be disturbed and felt like home there. It is a wood lot of 2.7 hectares that is the most suitable site for semi-free-ranging animals. The federal-level agency Inspection Tiger is responsible for the establishment of the center and was allocated funds from the government for it. The center will play a vital role in conserving Amur tigers and reducing tiger-human conflicts.

For many years the Inspection Tiger has been engaged in tiger rescue operations and release of tigers back into the wild. However, they had to use private farmsteads for cubs' maintenance and rehabilitation because there is not a single specialized rehabilitation center in Russia that would conduct the whole cycle of works on treatment, recovery and preparation of animals for release back into the wild. The population of the Amur tiger, living exclusively in the south of the Russian Far East, has low numbers and very low genetic variety. Preservation of each healthy reproductive individual, capable of living in the nature independently, is very important for Amur tiger conservation as a whole.
The Phoenix Fund visited the site to see future tiger rehab. The huge area was already segmented with numerous enclosures. The director of Inspection Tiger Victor Gaponov who was hosting the visit explained that the enclosures were intended for quarantine, rehabilitation of tiger cubs where they will learn to hunts and be afraid of people, for wild boar and deer housing and other purposes. Looks like new lodgers would be more than comfortable there.

At present, most of the federal funds were spent but there are few more things to be accomplished. With the help of the Phoenix Fund and GlobalGiving the Inspection Tiger is raising funds to build reserve enclosure, veterinary station and utility buildings.

Jul 7, 2011

GlobalGiving donations bought a quad bike for leopard reserve

We are very excited to inform our supporters at GlobalGiving that on July 6th, 2011 their generous donations helped the Phoenix Fund purchase a quad bike «Yamaha Grizzly 550» for Kedrovaya Pad Nature Reserve! The new ATV will allow the law-enforcement officers to patrol the most impassible territories of Kedrovaya Pad and Leopardovy protected areas. This was the fourth quad bike granted by Phoenix Fund for the needs of Amur leopard conservation.

“To save the rare Amur leopards we need to first of all focus on effective protection of its habitat,” - says the director of Kedrovaya Pad Nature Reserve Sergey Khohryakov. – “On the territory of the Leopardovy Wildlife Refuge there are eleven villages with fourteen thousand residents. Considerable part of the villagers ekes out a living from hunting and wild harvesting. Poachers get to the most secluded corners of protected forest by foot and we should have all-terrain vehicles to supervise and protect these areas. The Phoenix Fund responds immediately to needs of Law-enforcement Service of the reserve providing our inspectors with equipment, fuel, spare and repair parts, etc.”

Analyzing the latest leopard monitoring data the scientists concluded that protection of the Leopardovy refuge became more effective under the management of Kedrovaya Pad that resulted in increase of Amur leopards’ numbers.

We express our sincere gratitude to everyone who contributed to leopard conservation and supported our project.

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Jun 27, 2011

Another poacher arrested in Leopardovy refuge

On June 22, during the regular patrol along the territory of Leopardovy Wildlife Refuge the law-enforcement inspectors noticed two hunters with guns and backpacks.

During the pursuit, one hunter managed to disappear in the dense forest, the second was detained at the railway bridge through the Narva river, several kilometers away from Bezverhovo village, but without the weapon and a backpack. After the long search two backpacks and one unit of the weapon with a bandolier dumped in the course of a pursuit were found in a high grass. To extract the evidences, namely - presumably unregistered gun, one of the inspectors Andrey Onishchenko had to dive into cold water on depth of more than two meters to get it.

As the senior inspector of South team has informed, the detained resident of Bezverhovo village was brought to Slavyanskoe Police Department. The statement for a crime was submitted and registered. According to articles 144 and 145 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation inquiry bodies should make the decision on criminal case institution in three-day term.

This is a third fact of poachers detention made by South team in 2011. Earlier, on January 14 and on February 2, the South team apprehended poachers who were illegally hunting at the wildlife refuge territory. Criminal cases were initiated on both incidents.

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