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Young Russian artists draw trees for tigers.

If you drew a wild animal with which you shared a habitat, what would it be: a deer, a raccoon, maybe a bear? In Russia's Far East, that animal is the endangered Siberian tiger, and 61 elementary students drew pictures of the big cats recently as part of AMERICAN FORESTS' campaign to protect and restore the animal's forested habitat.

The children helped plant trees over the past year for AMERICAN FORESTS' Trees for Tigers campaign: 3,000 seedlings in Lazo village, 1,000 in Benevskaya village, and another 1,000 in Chernorychenskoe village.

The 5 winners are shown at right. Other finalists in the competition were: Vilson Sveta, age 10, Preobrazhenie village; Strotckaya Katya, age 13, Lazo village; Petrovetc Yulya, age 11, Preobrazhenie village; Vilchenko Lyuba, age 12, Preobrazhenie village; Afanasev Afanasii, age 10, Lazo village; Halilov Ahmad, age 13, Laze village; Blohina Tanya, age 12, Preobrazhenie village; Smirnova Lyuda, age 10, Laze village; Aicygina Nastya, age 10, Laze village.

For thousands of years vast, undisturbed forests of native Korean pine, oak, birch, fir, and maple stretched from the heart of Russia to the Sea of Japan. Wide-ranging and solitary, Siberian tigers rule a domain inhabited by wild boar and elk, which feed on the Korean pine's meaty nuts.

But years of intensive logging, agricultural development, and uncontrolled forest fires have taken their toll on those undisturbed forests--and on the Siberian tiger. Only a few hundred adult cats remain. AMERICAN FORESTS' goal is to plant 200,000 habitat-expanding trees this year and millions more in the years to come.

For more about this program or to send these drawings to friends as e-mailed postcards, visit:
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Publication:American Forests
Date:Sep 22, 2002
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