Conservationists say video footage from a series of camera traps in western Thailand confirm that recent anti-poaching efforts are working in the biodiverse region. The footage, taken at several locations over the
last year, provides an intimate glimpse of numerous rare species within the region’s Western Forest Complex, including video of a tigress and her cubs feeding on a kill, the elusive clouded leopard, and a group of Asian elephants rumbling within inches of the camera. The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), which set up the cameras in coordination with the Thai government, said that the sheer quantity of footage shows that Thailand’s anti-poaching efforts have been making progress. Earlier this year, WCS trained and equipped park rangers who were able to arrest poachers found with cellphone images of a dead tiger. When the poachers said the tiger was captured in another country, WCS was able to use camera trap footage to show that the animal had lived in Thailand’s forests. The 18,000-square-kilometer Western Forest Complex, which contains 17 contiguous protected areas, is home to an estimated 125 to 175 tigers and one of the most endangered elephant populations in Southeast Asia.