A countrywide count of India's tigers takes place every four years and the result of the latest census was released last month. It showed a 30% rise in tiger numbers since 2010.
A few critics, led by veteran tiger expert K Ullas Karanth, called the exercise "flawed" in parts and said it did not follow the "best available methodology" (TOI report `Meow, not roar: Experts maul census data', on February 4).
"These inferences are unfair," said Yadvendra D Jhala from Wildlife Institute of India, who is principal investigator of the tiger census exercise. "We use all published animal abundance methods -occupancy, capture-mark-recapture and distance sampling using the best available technology of remote camera traps, seethrough compasses, laser range finders and GPS," he told TOI. Answering the charge that "outdated" analytical tools such as regression and double sampling were being used, Jhala said, "Mathematics does not get outdated.