Ranthambhore tiger strays into Bundi, officials on trail

A tiger of Rajasthan’s Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve (RTR) in Sawai Madhopur has strayed into Ramgarh Vishdhari Sanctuary in Bundi

jaipur Updated: Dec 17, 2017 20:17 IST
Aabshar H Quazi
Aabshar H Quazi
Hindustan Times
Rajasthan news,Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve,T-91
Employees of Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve, Vishdhari sanctuary and Bundi wildlife department are tracking the tiger, T-91 for the last week. (HT Photo.)

A tiger of Rajasthan’s Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve (RTR) in Sawai Madhopur has strayed into Ramgarh Vishdhari Sanctuary in Bundi.

About 25 employees of RTR, Vishdhari sanctuary and Bundi wildlife department have been tracking the tiger, T-91, for the past one week, officials said.

“There is overcrowding of tigers at RTR due to which big cats often stray into other forest areas of neighbouring districts,” said VK Salwan, a former Indian Forest Services officer. “Like T-91, many tigers and tigresses have strayed into Vishdhari sanctuary in the past, and later returned to RTR.”

Tiger numbers have exploded in Ranthambore in the last few years, resulting in increasing territorial disputes among big cats.

The number of tigers in Ranthambore increased to 60 in 2016 from 14-18 in 1973, with the habitat remaining almost the same — 392 square kilometres. It is now the third most densely populated tiger home in India after Corbett in Uttarakhand and Kaziranga in Assam.

“T-91 had left Ramgarh Vishdhari Sanctuary a couple of days ago and entered the territorial forests of Bundi, but it has now returned to the sanctuary,” assistant conservator of forest, Bundi, Vijay Pal told HT. “It can’t be said with certainty if this tiger will move towards Mukundra Hills Tiger Reserve (MHTR) in Kota, which is 60 kms away, or return towards RTR.”

Wildlife activist Tapeshwar Singh Bhati said, “There are no underpasses on NH 52, so tigers cannot move ahead towards MHTR; there should be underpasses for facilitating movement of wildlife towards MHTR.”

Forest officials said between 2002 and 2013, six tigers migrated out of Ranthambore to different areas, including Kuno Palpur in Madhya Pradesh, and only one of them returned. Three of them were found dead and two did not return. In the recent past, four tigers have moved to Kailadevi, a new green home for Ranthambore animals.

First Published: Dec 17, 2017 20:16 IST