Walk to remember: Tiger covers 100km in 4 months to reach Sundarbans in Bangladesh from Indian forest
A tiger which had been radio-collared in India was found to have travelled around 100km to reach Sundarbans in Bangladesh over a period of four months, West Bengal’s chief wildlife warden VK Yadav was quoted as saying.
The male tiger was radio-collared in December 2020 to enable foresters to track his movement patterns near human beings. He was captured from Harinbhanga forest just opposite the Harikhali camp under Bashirhat range in Bengal and later released with the satellite collar on December 27, reports said.
His long and arduous journey to Bangladesh involved several hurdles including some rivers wider than a kilometre. Braving all odds, the tiger moved across three islands in the span of four months, Yadav said, adding that he did not venture near human habitats.
“After initial movements for a few days on the Indian side, it started venturing into the Talpatti island in Bangladesh Sunderbans and crossed rivers such as Choto, Harikhali, Boro Harikhali and even the Raimangal,” Yadav said. The tiger could originally have come from Bangladesh before foresters captured him for radio-collaring, Yadav added.
The last recorded location of the tiger was at Talpatti island in Bangladesh on May 11, according to reports. Throwing light on the possible reasons why there was no update on the tiger after May 11, Yadav said the collar may have slipped off its neck.
"The gadget also had a mortality sensor, which gives signals in case of the tiger's death. But that didn't happen…. In all probability, the collar has slipped off its neck. In the Sundarbans, salinity in the water can also damage radio collars," he said.
This was not the first time that a tiger from India has strolled to Bangladesh. In January 2017, a female tiger who was also radio-collared, travelled a 100km distance to reach the Bay of Bengal’s tip. Five other tigers were also radio-collared, out of which one travelled into Bangladesh’s Talpatti island, Dhaka Tribune reported.