Second tiger death in 7 days at Chandrapur, poaching ruled out
Less than a week after Srinivas, the son of iconic tiger Jai, was found electrocuted at Naghbid forest range, another male adult tiger was found dead on Wednesday afternoon, just 60 km away. Forest officials said the tiger died in mysterious circumstances. A post-mortem could not reveal the exact cause of death as the carcass was found decomposed near Palebarsa village in Chandrapur.
So far, this is the second tiger to have died at the Chandrapur territorial forests this year. Of the six tiger deaths in the state this year, poachers were responsible for two. Last year, nine tigers in Chandrapur and 16 in the state died. Of these, three were killed by poachers.
According to the forest department, the tiger’s carcass was found around 4pm near Bhoot Talab (a lake). It is likely that the tiger had come there to drink water before he died.
Rajam Talmale, assistant conservator of forest, Chandrapur, said the forest department had ruled out poaching. “There are no areas where villagers could have attacked the animal,” said Talmale. He said the tiger could have been killed by another adult male during a fight to establish territorial dominance.
“It is clear that this was not the tiger’s territory. A dominant tiger or pack of tigers could have attacked him. Another possible reason for his death could be an attack by a tigress trying to protect her cubs,” said Tito Joseph, progamme coordinator, Wildlife Protection Society of India.
The forest department will examine camera trap images of tigers across all three of Chandrapur’s districts and try to identify the tiger and his territory on the basis of his stripes.
On April 27, more than a year after Jai the tiger went missing, his son, Srinivas was found electrocuted in the Naghbid forest range. His body was dug out from the ground by forest officials. On April 20, forest officials found his radio collar near a nullah between Kothulna and Maushi villages. It was damaged and missing nuts and bolts.