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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Nagarhole loses 4th tiger in less than 2 months

DC | Amit S. Upadhye | 15 min 9 sec ago A tiger that was poisoned to death outside Nagarhole forests on February 17. The culprits are yet to be arrested. —DC Bengaluru: The decomposed body of a male tiger with its claws missing was found inside the Nagarhole Tiger Reserve (NTR) on Monday evening. The tiger may have died a week ago. The body was discovered by a patrolling team who were working on forest protection measures. The carcass was found in the Veeranahosahalli Range of NTR which has the highest concentration of tigers in the reserve. Forest officials say there is no sign of foul play, even though two tigers from Nagarhole were poisoned to death in separate incidents since January 13. They even claim that the missing tiger claws are not the handiwork of poachers but were eaten by wild boar and other animals that fed on the carcass. The wildlife conservationists in the State are seriously concerned and are demanding a thorough probe into the suspicious death of tigers in the last two months. “The tiger carcass was discovered around 4 pm in the forest and the autopsy was conducted before 6 pm. Why there was so much hurry in burning the dead tiger? The foresters could not even take the blood samples, claiming that there was nothing left in the decomposed body. Just because the carcass of the tiger was found in the interior of the forest does not mean that foul play cannot be suspected,” said a conservationist from Mysore district. The officials of the Forest Department, Government of Karnataka, has officially stated that the death of the tiger is a clear case of natural death. “An autopsy was conducted on the deceased tiger in the presence of veterinarians, senior forest officials, environmentalists and members of the Special Tiger Protection Force. The tiger was aged around 10-12 years and might have died in a fight with another tiger. The back of the tiger has scratch marks indicating that the tiger was involved in a territorial fight,” said a top official of Nagarhole Tiger Reserve.

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