Perbadanan Taman Negeri Perak (PTNPk) estimates there are only 23 tigers left in the Royal Belum and Temenggor forest reserves.
Its general manager Mohamed Shah Redza Hussein said the figure was about a 60 percent drop from the over 60 tigers recorded in the two forest reserves seven years ago.
He said the biggest threat to the tiger population at the two habitats is poaching, believed to be done by foreigners, especially from Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia and aided by locals.
"If we do not act now, we will have less than 10 (tigers). A population this low is not enough for breeding.
“If this happens, it means tigers will become extinct in Royal Belum and Temenggor,” he told reporters after attending the Malaysian-level International Tigers Day celebration held in Gerik today.
He added that the Perak Wildlife Department had stepped up monitoring and enforcement to stamp out poaching of tigers in the two habitats.