The next time someone bothers you for spending too much time on your mobile phone, tell them you’re Texting for Tigers. Better yet, tell the truth. World Wildlife Fund, the panda bear people, have launched the campaign to help save tigers from extinction. Why? There are only about 3,200 left in the wild.
You’ll be in good company if you join in. Campaign supporters include actors Ethan Suplee (from TV’s “My Name is Earl”), Leonardo DiCaprio, Jared Leto, Sophia Bush and even Dick Van Dyke.
Here’s how to get involved:
Text “TIGERS” to 20222. It’s a $10 donation each time you enter the letters and digits. Suplee has recorded a video plea.
Show Your Stripes. Use this “Year of the Tiger” Facebook app to add a tiger mask, tiger stripes or paw prints to your profile picture to spread awareness about the plight of tigers (This also helps if someone says you’re spending too much time on Facebook).
Find Out More. WWF has videos available that tell the story, including how and when the last Bali tiger was killed (1937), making the sub-species extinct. Be advised, the videos contain graphic images.
This is a serious issue. The number of wild tigers has declined by 97% in the last 100 years. The 3,200 or so left are the lowest number ever recorded. Illegal poaching is the main cause, along with shrinking habitat from logging and commercial plantations. If tigers and their habitats continue to decline at current rates, wild tigers may be extinct in just a few decades, according to WWF.
Money from “Texting for Tigers” will go to directly to:
- Strengthen grassroots projects to save tiger habitat across its range;
- Support antipoaching efforts on the ground;
- Build political will so that governments commit to bold, game-changing strategies that give wild tigers a future, the WWF says.
The group’s goal is to double the global tiger population by 2022.
Image Credit: WWF-Canon / Alain COMPOST