As Clemson University’s Tigers start the year off No. 1 in college football, Tigers United University Consortium is bringing attention to the dire situation facing wild tigers across the globe.
Only 3,900 tigers remain in the wild—worldwide.
Our mascot faces extinction. That’s why, as fans prepare to cheer on their Clemson Tigers this week, Tigers United is asking all those who hold the tiger dear to join in the fight to save them.
Beginning Sept. 3, Tiger Awareness Week will launch on Clemson’s campus, with various activities hosted by Tigers United University Consortium.
Tigers United University Consortium is an organization devoted to tiger conservation and consists of four land-grant, tiger mascot universities working collaboratively on this issue. Along with the founding member, Clemson University, there is Auburn University, Louisiana State University and University of Missouri. The other universities are likewise bringing awareness to the threats facing tigers on their campuses this week, culminating with the home games on September 7.. (Because LSU doesn’t have a home game this week, the university will roll out its campaign on September 14.)
The unique, collaborative approach to tiger conservation is what sets Tigers United apart from other conservation programs. Representatives from each university will meet on Sept. 3 to convene a Tigers United Academic Summit and discuss topics like expansion of our Ph.D. program; awareness; and outreach and research.
“It’s imperative that our fan base understand the dire need tigers are in and how they can help them,” said Tigers United Director Brett Wright.
“Each week, Clemson fans say, ‘Go Tigers,’ “But what will we say when they’re gone?”
To raise awareness and community outreach, Tigers United is hosting two public events and a scarcity scavenger hunt. Each day, Tigers United will release clues on its social media accounts to find a tiger on or near Clemson University’s campus. The clues will teach participants facts about the species and the dangers they face – like poaching and human encroachment are two dangers to the tigers’ extinction.
Participants are asked to follow @TigersUnited on Instagram or Facebook and tag friends and then take a selfie with the tiger you find while using the hashtags #tigersearch and #tigersunited. The more clues participants find, the more chances they receive in the cash prize drawing happening at the Tigers United pre-game sponsor tent. The drawing will be held at 2 p.m. that on September 7 at the Tigers United booth near Death Valley Gate 1. Join First Lady Beth Clements and Grace Clements before the drawing from 12:45-1:15 p.m. and learn how you can join the fight. Giveaways are available while supplies last. You can also register to receive daily clue reminders by texting “TIGERSEARCH” to 51555.
“The tiger scavenger hunt is a fun way to bring the scarcity issue to light,” said Rachelle Beckner, Tigers United project coordinator. “As participants read and study the clues, we hope they’re learning more about wild tigers and realizing they have an active role in saving them.”
In addition to the scavenger hunt, Tigers United is raising awareness with a documentary showing on Tuesday, September 3, beginning at 4 p.m. at Strom Thurmond Institute. This free event is open to the public and participants have an opportunity to win a prize. Guests will be greeted by Cub, Clemson’s mascot, beginning at 3:45 p.m. Come get your picture taken with Cub on our orange carpet. This PBS documentary features ecologist Chris Morgan as he travels to far eastern Russia in search of Siberian tigers that hold rank in the frozen forests. The film features the work of Korean cameraman Sooyong Park, the first individual to film Siberian tigers in the wild. Park spent years in the forest tracking and filming the world’s biggest cat. Park’s tracking technique was unconventional, but produced more than a thousand hours of wild tiger footage and captured the saga of a Siberian tiger dynasty. Morgan spends time with Park, learning firsthand just how hard it was for him to achieve his remarkable accomplishment.
Mark your calendars and join Tigers United during Tiger Awareness Week. You can join the fight help make sure that wild tigers reach a number one ranking.
Tigers United University Consortium consists of four land-grant, tiger mascot universities that work collaboratively on tiger conservation. The universities involved are Auburn University, Clemson University, Louisiana State University and University of Missouri.
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