Tiger gene pool to expand with release of captured big cat at Panna

  • Rahul Noronha, Hindustan Times, Bhopal
  • Updated: Oct 30, 2015 19:34 IST
The tiger that had wandered onto the premises of an institute at Nabibagh on the outskirts of Bhopal on Thursday was tranquilised and safely captured by a team of the forest department.

The tiger gene pool at the Panna national park in MP is set to expand with the release of the tiger captured from the Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Nabibagh, on the outskirts of Bhopal.

The around four-year-old tiger had inadvertently wandered onto the premises of the institute at Nabibagh, barely 8 km from the city centre, and a team of the forest department tranquilised and safely captured it.

The tiger was then taken to Panna national park to be released.

Since the reintroduction plan was initiated in 2009, the genetic lineage of all the tigers born at the Panna national park can be traced back a single male tiger T3, who was brought from Pench tiger reserve.

Chief conservator of forests (CCF) wildlife, R Sriniwas Murthy informed HT that two factors played into deciding to release the captured tiger in Panna.

“For one, there was a requirement of two males and four females at the Panna tiger reserve as part of the ongoing reintroduction plan. With the tiger captured in Bhopal to be released at Panna, a different gene pool would be introduced at the park,” he said “A different gene pool would strengthen conservation efforts at the park.”

All the tigers in Panna were wiped out by 2008 after which the state government initiated a reintroduction programme. Under the programme, four adult tigresses and one adult tiger were released in Panna from Kanha, Bandhavgarh and Pench.

All the tigers born in Panna were fathered by the solitary male T3. Presently, the tigers being born in Panna are either fathered by T3 or by his male offsprings.

At present, there are three adult males and 10 adult females on the reserve. With the release of the captured tiger, the total number of adult male tigers in Panna would go up to four and total number of specimens would go up to 32.

Read: ‘Translocation of tiger to Panna violates NTCA guidelines’

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