Saturday, August 2, 2008

Sariska Update

Bengal tigerA little while ago I mentioned the recent move by authorities in India to relocate tigers to the Sariska forest and I thought I might give a quick update on how the project is progressing so far. To refresh you on the topic: Sariska is a designated wildlife reserve next to the Indian capital that once used to be teeming with tigers but was wiped clean of the striped cat by poachers in recent years. Now, in a historic move, Indian Government is attempting to repopulate the reserve with tigers. Two tigers, a male and a female, have been flown via helicopter from the Ranthambore reserve to Sariska. Already they have marked their territory and moved to separate areas of the jungle in their newly established domains. Both the animals are relatively young and in good health. The male tiger has proved to be more of an exploratory nature, straying occasionally near human settlements whereas the tigress has displayed better hunting abilities and is making more frequent kills. However there are still some hurdles in the successful culmination of this novel plan.

Sariska is dotted with human population. There are over two dozen villages in it and thus far only one has been vacated of its inhabitants. The majority of people are unwilling to move from the land where they have resided for generations despite the compensation offered to them. Plus there are two major roads crossing through the park that thousands of commuters use daily. Then there are also temples in the confines of the reserve that attract tens of thousands of pilgrims annually. Thus, naturally, there is a lot of room for conflict between man and beast and the whole situation requires diligent monitoring.

Wildlife officials are trying to counter the challenges though. Both the big cats have been collared and are being tracked. Number of rangers guarding the reserve has been increased and attempts are being made to regularize the flow of traffic and pilgrims through the jungle. It is still a long way before the roar of the tiger reverberates through every part of Sariska but still hopes are high that this might prove to be a turning point in the fate of Bengal Tigers. Another tigress is scheduled to be introduced to the park in the coming days and a couple more are set to arrive in the next few months. Let's just hope that it all goes well and the magnificent animals settle nicely into their new home.


JIF Hub said...

Thank you so much for visiting our 'Zoo Pen' blog about a week ago! Your site is very informative as well! Will definitely visit again :)

Karen Jo said...

I really hope that this plan succeeds. I also hope that the tigers learn to avoid the roads very quickly.

S. A. Hart said...

Great blog! You might want to check out my blog article where I wrote about artists who painted cats. Here's the link:

The article is called All Things Bright and Beautiful


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