Search This Blog

Friday, October 12, 2012

Sariska set to get three more tigers

Anindo Dey, TNN Oct 11, 2012, 06.13AM IST Sariska tiger translocation project|Panna Tiger Reserve|NTCA JAIPUR: With the Sariska tiger translocation project bearing fruit in the form of two cubs, the stage is set for Sariska to get three more tigers. In fact, the second phase of the translocation will see the forest department trying to introduce fresh blood into the 866 sq km forest. "Plans have been finalized for the shifting of three big cats to Sariska. One of the tigress will be from Ranthambore and two more (one male and one female) will be relocated from outside the state. It could either be from Madhya Pradesh or Maharashtra and we are talking to both the states," says V S Singh, additional chief secretary, environment and forest, government of Rajasthan. Ads by Google Hotels in Pune Best Budget 5 Star Enjoy the inaugral offer now Luxury Home Offer Few Days Left, Book Flats & Win 5 Lacs of Gold + Save 2.7 Lacs! The optimism of the forest department in taking the experiment forward stems from the recent sighting of not just one but two cubs last month, nearly four years after the first translocation of male tiger ST1 was done in Sariska. That was on a rainy June morning in 2008. But the joy was shortlived. In the backdrop of numerous controversies on the experiment that began gaining ground, the tigers failed to bring in a litter despite numerous occasion when they were seen mating. This at a time when the Panna tiger reserve, that aped the Sariska experiment, was bursting with cubs. The big jolt came one November morning in 2010 when ST1 was poisoned by villagers. The forests department then relocated a male tiger that had strayed away into Bharatpur from the Ranthambore tiger reserve, taking the total count of big cats once again to five — two males and three females. "We have identified the tigress that will be brought from Ranthambore. Currently the tigress is with her cubs but soon the cubs will become sub-adults and go their way. That is when we plan to bring her into Sariska. In fact, the National Tiger Conservation Authority ( NTCA) has already given an in-principle nod for it," added V S Singh, additional chief secretary, environment and forest, government of Rajasthan. On the tiger to be brought from outside, A C Chaubey, chief wildlife warden, Rajasthan, revealed, "There was a meeting last month in Delhi with officials of the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA )and Wildlife Institute of India (WII). Both the bodies were apprised of the plan. At least one tigress will be brought from Madhya Pradesh. But there will be a study done by WII to see if the tigers are compatible before they are actually brought in." However, cynics already see the move as a confused step. "Initially the forest department had expressed opinions of wanting to keep the Ranthambore breed of tigers pure. Why the sudden change in plans? Moreover, just two cubs may be too early to call the experiment a success. But it is not just numbers... what about making the habitat safer for tigers. Just last month there was an incident of a leopard being poached in Sariska. Added to that there has been little effort in relocating more villages or even curbing traffic on the roads that skirt the reserve. The forest department should first initiate these then take the experiment forward," conservationists felt.

No comments:

Post a Comment