After losing white tigress Diya a couple of days back, Kamla Nehru zoo is on the verge of losing another white tigress Sita.
Seventeen-year-old Sita, who has already crossed the average survival age of a big cat - life span of a big cat is usually around 18 years - was the first female tigress to be brought to the Indore zoo around 11 years ago in 2004 from Aurangabad under animal exchange programme.
Speaking to Hindustan Times, zoo in-charge Dr Uttam Singh Yadav said the ailing big cat is on death bed because of old age. “Her vital organs are showing extensive signs of degeneration due to old age…Her senses too have slowed down over the past few days,” he said.
“The big cat had stopped eating for a few days. Its movements are also restricted within its enclosure,” Dr Yadav said. He claimed that Sita is the oldest white tigress in the zoo.
“She was brought to Indore zoo from Aurangabad, Maharashtra in 2004 under animal exchange programme.
After she was brought to Indore, Sita delivered twice during her 11-year stint at the zoo and is the mother of total six big cats. Only after her arrival at the zoo the number of the rare species of big cats increased,” said Yadav.
“The old tigress has been a star attraction at the zoo in the last decade,” he added.
Besides Sita, Indore zoo will have two white tigresses. Earlier four-year-old white tigress Riddhi was exchanged for B1 yellow tiger from Van Vihar, Bhopal.
After losing three big cats recently and now on the verge of losing Sita, the ambitious breeding programme of the Indore zoo to increase population of white tiger looks in soup. At present, Indore zoo has two white tigresses and four cubs, but no male white tiger, which may prove a setback.
Earlier, on December 1, two-year-old young male white tiger Rajan was brought at the Indore zoo, but he had succumbed to snake bite on December 27.
July 11, 2015: Five-year-old white tigress Diya succumbed after battling intestinal cancer for about a month and a half.
Feb 3, 2015: One of country’s oldest captive Royal Bengal tiger “Shyamu” died at the age of 23-years and eight months. He died after his vital organs showed extensive signs of degeneration due to old age.
Dec 27, 2014: A white tiger, Rajan, who was brought to Indore zoo about a month ago from Bhilai, succumbed to snake bite.
Sept 5, 2014: Three newborn cubs died while the mother tigress was carrying them from one place to another.