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RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-16-2019

Newsd Exclusive: “Security of Tiger is important, not what border it is in” says Forest Minister Umang Singhar

https://newsd.in/newsd-exclusive-security-of-tiger-is-important-not-what-border-it-is-in-says-forest-minister-umang-singhar/



While the incident has made speculations and raised several questions over relocation of tiger in one of the two states (Madhya Pradesh or Gujarat), Umag Singhar, the Forest Minister of Madhya Pradesh has said that “security of animal is important, not the border it stays in.”

Speaking to Newsd, Singhar said that “Tiger is a free animal. It cannot be and must not be bound with territorial boundaries. India is a federal state and such elements can’t be claimed by one entity. It has to be shared by everybody with full honour and pride.”

“All we are concerned about is the security of the Animal. We urge the Gujarat government to take necessary action into the relocation of the big cat.”

Quote:“Recently nearly 25 lions died in past two months following which it has been advised to relocate in wild cats in order to save their species. Even after the advised directions to relocate the endangered Asiatic Lions, Gujarat government seems to be reluctant. But we urge to the concerning authorities to not bound the mobility of animals,” added MP Forest Minister.
(Hats off to Madhya Pradesh and its people and politicians, These are noble hearted people (Heart of India is MP)"

He continued saying that, “We are at our utmost presence to serve the wildlife, flora and founa. Weather it is the lions or the tiger that has been spotted in Gujarat, we will serve unconditionally for the betterment of forests.”

The limelight on this tiger comes at a time when the MP forest department has decided to notify the densely-populated tiger habitat region of Ratapani as a wildlife division. There are more than 34 tigers in about 2,170 sq km of Ratapani forest and environmentalists have long been pressing for declaring it a tiger sanctuary.

Wildlife officers and environmentalists in Madhya Pradesh are stunned at how the big cat crossed densely populated regions without any conflict with humans, unlike the tiger that walked in here from Maharashtra, killing two people on the way


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-16-2019

Gir sanctuary lion found dead amid concerns

*This image is copyright of its original author

Image Credit: Twitter (@PIB_India)

A lion was found dead in Tulsishyam range of Gir Wildlife Sanctuary near Amreli district of Gujarat on Friday, officials said.

The lion, aged between 5 and 7/9 years, was found dead by the forest staff of the Gir-East division during a routine patrolling in Nandivela foothill area inside the protected forest, D T Vasavada, Chief Conservator of Forests, Junagadh Wildlife Circle, said.

*This image is copyright of its original author

Lion DECOMPOSED body of Prime Adult Male Lion found. This time with 14 nails missing. Finding again & again such decomposed bodies convey a lot.

The carcass of the lion was sent for post-mortem to ascertain the cause of death, the official said.

Over 30 lions, including cubs, have died in and around the Gir forest since September last year due to various reasons. While many of them had succumbed to viral infections, some others had died of natural causes, territorial fights or after being hit by trains.

https://www.devdiscourse.com/article/national/383479-gir-sanctuary-lion-found-dead-amid-concerns
http://www.uniindia.com/lion-found-dead-in-gir-forest-in-gujarat/west/news/1501206.html
https://www.thequint.com/news/india/latest-ahmedabad-news-narendra-modi-vijay-rupani-gir-lion-teesta-setalavad


RE: Bigcats News - Lycaon - 02-16-2019

@Sanju 

I feel like we are witnessing the slow but steady extinction of asiatic lions.


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-17-2019

'Tiger staying in Gujarat since August 2018'

*This image is copyright of its original author

Forest officials said that the tiger is reported to be male

The tiger from Ratapani in MP, captured in forest department's cameras in Santrampur in Panchmahal district on February 12, has turned out to be a resident of Gujarat.
Forest officials confirmed that the tiger, which left MP in 2017, has been staying in the state for past few months, most probably since August 2018.

"The tiger is confirmed to be staying in the state since August last year. Post monsoon, we had zeroed in on a pugmark of a Big Cat after rain water receded in Lunawada forest area. The pugmark, which was preserved, has turned out to be a perfect match with the pugmarks taken of the tiger on February 12 as well February 15 night in the same region," said a senior forest official.

Forest officials said that the tiger, which was spotted at Gadh village in the wee hours of Saturday, is also reported to be a male.

"Contrary to earlier reports that the tiger may be a female with cubs, the pugmarks taken from the site reveal that in all probability it is a male tiger," said another senior forest official.

Officials said that pugmarks are deep, indicating it to be of a male tiger.
Quote:"Male tiger has more weight and hence its pugmarks are deeply embedded in the earth as compared to their female counterparts," said an official.

Gujarat only state home to 3 big cats (for sometime only, after that MP will be the only for that attribute)

Additional chief secretary of forest and environment Rajiv Gupta said he has not received report of tiger pugmarks matching old pugmarks. “We will have to check with the local forest officials about this report,” he said.

Vertebrate ecologist and tiger expert Dr AJT Johnsingh told TOI that the tiger sighted in Gujarat should be viewed as “reclaiming their habitat.” He added, “Gujarat should take pride that it is the only state where all three panthera cats –tiger, lion and leopard—reside.”

Principal chief conservator of forest AK Saxena said an inquiry report would be sought to ascertain the length of the tiger’s stay in the state.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/ahmedabad/tiger-staying-in-gujarat-since-august-2018/articleshow/68030231.cms?utm_source=nyoooz&utm_medium=post


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-19-2019

Tiger sighting likely to bring menace of poachers with it


*This image is copyright of its original author

Forest officials hold meet with residents of Rampur village
Gujarat forest officials are concerned that tiger sighting in Gujarat after a long gap of 30 years may bring with it the menace of poachers.

Officials have deployed additional personnel to sight and track the beast’s movements in the Mahisagar district of Gujarat, since getting confirmation of its presence from a trap camera on February 13.

Gujarat forest department has deployed additional 200 personnel, including trackers, to maintain tiger’s sightings. Besides senior officials, these men have been given additional task of interacting with villages in the 40 km stretch where there have been maximum sightings. Village-level meetings are conducted to inform the locals about tiger behaviour, teach them how to stay out of its way and most of all keep an eye for suspicious movement of people not from around there.

Officials are also setting up information network of villagers who could immediately inform them about tiger sightings or suspicious movement.

Talking about the sensitisation drive, Deputy Conservator of Forest R M Parmar said, “We have intensified our patrols throughout the forest area with focus on a 40-km stretch from where maximum sightings were reported.

We are informing villagers about possible threats, how to remain safe from the predator and how to get in touch with the department in case of any sighting. We are meeting village leaders and conducting meets even at hamlet level.”

Talking about the forest department exercise, environmental enthusiast Pratik Jain said, “Department has got active in the last few days. They have been patrolling on all possible routes round-the-clock. I have also observed many foresters and guards stationed at critical locations 24x7.”

Tiger in Gujarat since November 2017

Officials had received unconfirmed reports of tiger sighting since November 2017 after the Madhya Pradesh officials tracking it from Ratapani lost its track near Jabhua, which is about 50 km from the border of MP and Gujarat.

A senior official said, in absence of any confirmation, no announcement was made about it though Gujarat officials had paid visit to Jabhua to hold discussions with their Madhya Pradesh counterparts.

A tiger or "streak" of tigers?

Locals of the area have claimed sightings of a tigress along with her two cubs, giving rise to speculation that there could be a tiger, a tigress and two cubs in Gujarat. However, there has been no confirmation from the forest officials.

Forest dept to compensate for loss of livestock

As part of the sensitisation drive, the forest department officials are distributing pamphlets to locals about the precautionary measures to be taken and compensation payable in case of loss of livestock to tiger attack.


Forest department will pay compensation of Rs 30,000 for loss of cow and buffalo, Rs 3,000 for sheep and goat, Rs 25,000 for horse, camel and ox and Rs 16,000 for donkey and calf.

The pamphlet advises people living in the Gadh taluka to avoid going in forest area after sunset unless it is unavoidable. If it is very important they must go in a group of 3-4 persons. While walking through the forest or farms, they must speak loudly and keep a torch in hand.


*This image is copyright of its original author

Tiger sightings concentrated between Gadh and Santrampur

https://ahmedabadmirror.indiatimes.com/ahmedabad/others/tiger-sighting-likely-to-bring-menace-of-poachers-with-it/articleshow/68054172.cms?fbclid=IwAR0mfOSAgAjCABGl-9HAawyizpNlcvS5gFvreMQ8RMCYjvu1MqHBmbl0H3U


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-19-2019

Lion cub dies in Gir sanctuary


*This image is copyright of its original author

Lion cub dies in Gir sanctuary

A female lion cub died in Gir Wildlife Sanctuary on Monday, officials said.

The cub, between 8 to 9 months old, collapsed and died shortly after it was sighted by a team of forest officials and a veterinary doctor, they said. 

The officials had gone to the forest under the Gir-West division to rescue another animal when they came across the cub, said D T Vasavada, Chief Conservator of Forests, Junagadh Wildlife Circle. 

The carcass was sent to the Sasan Rescue Centre for autopsy so as to ascertain the cause of death, he added. No external injuries were found on the cub’s body

Quote:On February 15, a lion, aged between 5 to 9 years, had been found dead in Tulsishyam range of Gir-East division of the sanctuary.

Over 30 lions, including cubs, have died in and around Gir Forest since September 2018 due to various reasons, including viral infections, territorial fights or being hit by trains. Gir Forest is home to over 600 Asiatic lions.

https://www.thehansindia.com/posts/index/National/2019-02-19/Lion-cub-dies-in-Gir-sanctuary/497840


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-20-2019

Anthropogenic pressures threaten Similipal-Satkosia wildlife corridor plan

Quote:The proposed corridor in Odisha can be connecting link for the survival of endangered species. But mining activities need to be eliminated


*This image is copyright of its original author


In 1976, Satkosia in Angul district of Odisha was established as a wildlife sanctuary. It was designated as a tiger reserve in 2007 and comprises the Satkosia Gorge Wildlife Sanctuary and the adjacent Baisipalli Wildlife Sanctuary. It is a paradise of immense scenic charm and is one of the best ecosystems in the country, home to diverse floral and faunal species.

The major plant species in this mixed deciduous forests include Sal as well as riverine forests. The area is also a part of the Mahanadi elephant reserve.

At present, the area houses some tigers and there are plans to reintroduce more from other areas.

Importantly, the National Tiger Conservation Authority has identified a potential link for the migration of wild animals from the Similipal Tiger Reserve to the Satkosia Tiger Reserve and has proposed a corridor.

It is a very long corridor, but is highly fragmented due to intense mining activities, power stations and a large number of human habitations. According to a study by the Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun, conducted in 2014, there are more than 250 villages in and around of this corridor.

A part of this proposed corridor connects the Similipal National Park with the Hadgarh Wild-life Sanctuary through the Noto and Satkosia Reserve Forests.

The other corridor considered to be important for the movement of the animals is the BaulaKuldiha corridor, which is 15-16 km long. This corridor connects the Kuldiha Wild-life Sanctuary with the Hadgarh Wildlife Sanctuary through small hillocks in the Garsahi Reserve Forest, Gaguapahar, Balihudi and Baula hills.

This corridor is being used by herds of 20-25 elephants. The Hadgarh-Kuldiha corridor is also being used by small herds of 10-15 elephants.

Thus a connection between the Similipal Tiger Reserve, the Hadgarh Wildlife Sanctuary and the Kuldiha Wildlife Sanctuary forms a U-shaped path that provides a potential movement corridor to tigers and elephants. The movement of elephants has also been observed from Kuldiha to the Satkosia Tiger Reserve.

The complete length of the proposed Similipal–Satkosia corridor may not be effectively functional due to several anthropogenic pressures, but from a conservation point of view, it is very important.

Mining disturbances

The Diatari iron ore mining lease of the Odisha Mining Corporation (OMC) is spread over an area of 1,018.3 hectares (ha), of which 846.4 ha is forest land.

The lease area of this mine spreads through the Keonjhar wildlife division and the Cuttack forest division.


Quote:The habitat in the vicinity of the mining lease area supports various wild animals, including Schedule 1 species like the Indian Elephant, Indian Wolf, Mouse Deer, Ratel (Honey badger), Sloth Bear, Jackal, Barking Deer, Sambar, Peafowl, "King Cobra", Russel’s Viper, Hill Myna, Indian Soft-Shelled turtle and the Large Bengal monitor lizard, according to an Environment Impact Assessment report submitted to the Union Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change in 2010.


The Daitari iron ore mine has been in operation since 1966. When the lease deed expired in 1996, it was renewed for another 20 years. Though the ongoing operations have no legal validity, OMC has applied for a further extension. This iron ore mine is located within the Similipal–Satkosia proposed corridor connecting two potential habitats for tigers, elephants and other wildlife resources. It is also close to the Similipal–Hadgarh–Kuldiha corridor, which is a vital movement route for elephants and tigers.

For the Satkosia Tiger Reserve, Similipal is considered to be the source population of tigers because of seclusion of Satkosia from other connected protected areas.

Conservationists hope that the proposed corridor will help recover tiger populations in the Satkosia Tiger Reserve in the near future. They say further expansion of Diatari mining lease area will pose a threat to the abundance and diversity of flora and fauna and would further worsen the connectivity.

From an ecological perspective, the cumulative impacts of mining in this region will further aggravate the sustainability challenges of the landscape due to disturbances, deterioration of forest ecology and alteration in drainage system.

At present, tiger densities in both Similipal and Satkosia are depressed and there is a lack of a source population to ensure tiger occupancy within the larger landscape. With appropriate protection and managerial changes, tiger populations in both these reserves can revive, but their long-term survival would depend on the "gene flow" between these populations.

Therefore, multi-layered strategies will be required to keep this corridor functional. At the same time, there is an urgent need for an assessment of the impact of mining on the wild flora and fauna before clearance is given for further extension of the lease for mining.

(The writers work with the Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun)

https://www.downtoearth.org.in/news/anthropogenic-pressures-threaten-similipal-satkosia-wildlife-corridor-plan-62835?fbclid=IwAR3rnPXk_hMuNHa_1qYnRSd1S0Wn8nIoXwbqrE12fQ6nddLtqFAXasurUh4

Refer to this map which gives a rough idea about the plan:

*This image is copyright of its original author


http://www.orissalinks.com/orissagrowth/topics/tourism-and-shopping-in-orissa/national-parks-and-sanctuaries/satkosia


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-20-2019







RE: Bigcats News - Apollo - 02-20-2019

(02-15-2019, 03:44 PM)Roflcopters Wrote: Carcass of Royal Bengal Tiger found in Kaziranga National Park (infighting)

KAZIRANGA: Forest guards in Kaziranga National Park on Tuesday found the carcass of a Royal Bengal Tiger in the Bagori range. “The carcass of a Royal Bengal Tiger was found on Wednesday near Roumari forest camp under Bagori range of KNP. It was an adult male tiger. As per preliminary assessment by the State Veterinary Officer, the cause of death of the tiger was infighting,” said Rohini Ballav Saikia, DFO.


*This image is copyright of its original author





at first i thought i was looking at a baby rhino carcass, what a giant male. I wonder how the rival male is doing. It must have been quite the fight. RIP


How T85 aka Pacman from Ranthambore compares to the Kaziranga male ???????
Pacman was also killed in a territorial fight.
Pacman is a large male.








RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-21-2019

Take good care of our tiger: MP asks Gujarat

*This image is copyright of its original author

Pugmark of a tiger used for representational purpose only

Madhya Pradesh forest department has asked Gujarat to ensure security of the tiger that has strayed into the latter’s territory. Chief wildlife warden has sent a letter in this regard asking officers to keep track of its movements and intimate MP.

“Animals know no borders, but since it’s our tiger we are concerned. We have send an official communication in this regard,” APCCF (wildlife) Dilip Kumar told TOI. The tiger had trekked 300km over the course of two years to reach Gujarat from Madhya Pradesh. A comparison of stripes from photographs taken during its journey prove that the tiger was from MP. Camera trap images confirm that this is the same tiger that was spotted close to Nagda hills of Dewas in January 2017.

Tigers are known to disperse far from their birthplace in search of new territories and mates. Several such incidents have been reported of late.


Quote:While on other hand environmentalists are thinking about the next step. “I am wondering what Gujarat is going to do with one tiger,” conservationist Vaibhav Chaturvedi said.


He added that good conservation efforts by the MP government is yielding results. “Tigers are straying out in search of new territories. This is a good sign of growing population,” he added. Even as India awaits results of the latest tiger census, forest officials and wildlife experts from MP are hopeful that the state will lead the nation in the number of big cats.

Insiders informed that census officials have recorded presence of tigers across 1450 beats compared to around 700 in the previous counting. Census results is expected to be out in a few months.

“Geographical mapping of tigers, which is conducted every four years and was held during January this year, has given positive indications. Population has doubled. We will regain our tiger state status,” said an officer.

Karnataka was on top with 406 tigers recorded in the 2014 census followed by
Uttarakhand with 340 tigers,
Madhya Pradesh (308) and
Tamil Nadu (229).

Forest officials said that the All India Tiger Assessment 2018 is expected to give more accurate results as this was the first tiger census where volunteers and foresters used a digital app to record their observations. The app, MSTrIPES, is an integrated

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bhopal/take-good-care-of-our-tiger-mp-asks-gujarat/articleshow/68087307.cms?fbclid=IwAR0i0y_hyTIVdTcSPIuaNU5uEWYGSX2Z0x_cm7GEggTN5iYJ9rFDR8P-e-Q

He tracked the tiger for days in 2017


*This image is copyright of its original author

While the state forest department may not have reacted much when the tiger now settled in Mahisagar district in Gujarat was merely a few kilometres away in Jhabua district in Madhya Pradesh (MP) in January last year, wildlife enthusiasts from the state tracked it for quite some distance till it entered Rajasthan.

The trail was given up only when it seemed that the tiger would go further into Rajasthan.

The movement of a tiger in the neighbouring Jhabua district in Decmber 2017 had generated much excitement amongst wildlife enthusiast Pratik Jain and others from Dahod district. It is not every day that the striped big cat comes so close to the state. Jain rushed to Jhabua and worked with the forest officials who were tracking the tiger.

“It has already been established that the tiger spotted in Mahisagar district is the same one spotted in Jhabua. It is a very smart animal. It has managed to remain largely undisturbed despite moving around even in revenue areas and making kills,” said Jain. He added that he was accompanied by Vivek Modi form Devgadh Baria.

Jain pointed out that even at that time there was a possibility that the tiger would come into Gujarat. “It used to walk 15-20 kilometres a day. It could have entered our state at any time. The forest officials in Gujarat were also alerted regarding the tiger,” Jain said.

But the tiger then started moving towards Rajasthan. The three states – Gujarat, MP and Rajasthan – share borders in the area. Jain said that the tiger was moving towards Banswara in Rajasthan. “We even came to know about some kills it made there,” said Jain. He added that with the tiger moving into Rajasthan, they gave up tracking it.

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/vadodara/he-tracked-the-tiger-for-days-in-2017/articleshow/68087100.cms?utm_source=nyoooz&utm_medium=post


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-22-2019

Canine distemper virus outbreak: All 36 quarantined lions fit, ready to be released into wild

Quote:As many as 17 of a total of 23 lions that had died between September 12 and October 2, after an outbreak of CDV in Sarasiya Vidi, a forest patch in Gir (east) in Amreli district, perished from the illness. Three others died fighting among themselves while the cause of death of the remaining three could not be ascertained.


*This image is copyright of its original author

As many as 17 lions had died between September 12 and October 2 of a CDV infection in Gir.

FIVE months after 36 Asiatic lions of the Gir (forest) division contracted a deadly respiratory and gastrointestinal disease, the animals are now fit and ready to be released into the wild again, forest officers said on Thursday.

The lions had been rescued from Gir (east) forest division in the last week of September to be treated for a Canine Distemper Virus (CDV) infection. “All the 36 (rescued) lions have survived and recovered,” Dushyant Vasavada, Chief Conservator of Forests, Junagadh Wildlife Circle told The Indian Express on Thursday. “We have decided in principle to release them back in to the wild. When and where…is yet to be worked out.”

As many as 17 of a total of 23 lions that had died between September 12 and October 2, after an outbreak of CDV in Sarasiya Vidi, a forest patch in Gir (east) in Amreli district, perished from the illness. Three others died fighting among themselves while the cause of death of the remaining three could not be ascertained.

CDV is a highly contagious disease that affects a host of wild animals. It had wiped out a third of the lion population in Tanzania in the early 1990s.

Lions are territorial animals and with an increase in their population, they are recapturing their old range. For this reason, experts advise extreme caution while releasing the 36 lions back into the wild following their treatment. Ravi Chella, a researcher who has studied the Asiatic lions of Gir, said that other lions might have moved in to Sarasiya and Semardi by now, and it could lead to territorial fights.

Following the initial deaths of 13 lions in Sarasiya Vidi, 13 lions from the area were taken to Jasadhar Rescue Centre for treatment. However, 10 of them died. Three survived. Another 31 lions from Semardi adjoining Sarasiya Vidi were shifted to Jamwala Rescue Centre in Gir (west) forest division for treatment, while two others from neighbouring Paniya range were taken to Babarkot Rescue Centre near Jafrabad in Amreli social forestry division.

After laboratory tests confirmed the presence of the virus, the lions were given doses of CDV vaccine imported from the United States. “The vaccination cycle, which included administering three doses at specified intervals, has been completed, and presently the animals carry no risk of the disease,” Vasavada said.

Asiatic lions are endangered. Their only wild population in the world survives in the Gir forest and other protected areas spread across Junagadh, Gir Somnath, Amreli and Bhavnagar districts in Saurashtra region of Gujarat. A 2015 census counted 523 lions.

https://indianexpress.com/article/cities/ahmedabad/canine-distemper-virus-outbreak-all-36-quarantined-lions-fit-ready-to-be-released-into-wild/?fbclid=IwAR3wP7dfF261rVHkDAvyua9P45yy0imMyCPuJ1yqi2Rd60R-oFe4F79PZEU


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-22-2019





Tiger will not be sent to Madhya Pradesh, says Zambua CFO.

(LOL, hear his words from 1:40, if you understand Hindi. He said: "Wildlife doesn't belong to a particular place, it belongs to the whole country, it is not Madhya Pradesh Tiger, it is Country's tiger. So it does apply for every animal including tiger but not for lion. wow! what a concept. Hat's off Gujarat)

BTW, see the full video, there are videos about the landscape which tiger living etc etc..,







RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-22-2019

Gujarat: Two animal rescue centres get government nod

Read more at:
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/68094947.cms?utm_source=contentofinterest&utm_medium=text&utm_campaign=cppst


HC seeks report on canine distemper which killed 11 lions

Read more at:
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/68102110.cms?utm_source=contentofinterest&utm_medium=text&utm_campaign=cppst



RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-23-2019

36 Gir lions to be back in jungle in India’s largest reintroduction operation
Quote:The lions were declared fit after recovering from canine distemper virus infection.


*This image is copyright of its original author

An Asiatic lion rests in Gir forest.(REUTERS)

The Gujarat forest department will take up the country’s biggest and most challenging effort to reintroduce big cats from captivity to the wild now that 36 Asiatic lions suspected to be infected with canine distemper virus (CDV) have been declared fit to return to their natural habitat, according to officials familiar with the development.

The scale of this operation will be larger than ever before; no more than two big cats have been needed to be reintroduced from captivity to the wild at the same time, according to experts.

Quote:Even for relocations from one wild habitat to another, the largest number at one time was six in Sariska between 2007 and 2012.

“All 36 lions, housed in two groups at Jamwada and Devaliya rescue centres are fit. They will be released into the wild very soon,” Gujarat’s chief conservator of forest, Junagadh range, DT Vasavda, said.

“We need to chalk out a detailed plan on how, when and where, the lions will be relocated. It will be a major exercise that will be done in phases.”

According to biologist Fayaz Khudsar, there have been no more than three or four cases of reintroduction of tigers in the wild.

Even then, in most cases, they were cubs rather than full-grown tigers, said Khudsar, who has worked in tiger habitats in Madhya Pradesh.

“The lions… would have become habitual to humans. They will have to be kept in a big enclosure to reorient them before releasing them in the wild,” explained Rajesh Gopal, secretary general of the Global Tiger Forum, who as head of National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) monitored the relocation of tigers to Sariska and Panna.

The 36 lions suspected to be infected with CDV were moved to the two care centres last October following deaths of over 25 lions over a month. It was for the first time that the Gir National Park and Sanctuary, or any other wildlife habitat in India, saw such a big breakout of CDV. The virus that spreads from stray dogs was responsible for wiping out several hundred lions in East Africa in 1994.

Under the supervision of experts from India and abroad, three cycles of CDV vaccination were completed in four months, before declaring the lions fit. “Lions were quarantined as a precautionary measure,” Vasavda said.

The reintroduction task for the Gujarat forest department will not be easy as lions, like tigers, are territorial animals and take time to define and settle in their domain.

Gujarat forest department officials and experts identified two challenges for the reintroduction — first the territories from where the lions were picked for treatment of suspected CDV have been taken up by new pride; second, finding new territories may be difficult considering that the Gir National Park and Sanctuary is now filled to the brim with about 600 lions, as per the state government’s latest estimate, despite losing 204 tigers (i think, they meant for lions) in 2017 and 2018. Gir had 523 lions in 2015.

Vasavda said relocating all the 36 lions to their earlier home in Dalkhania range in Amreli district (semardi/tusishyam), where they belonged at the time of the outbreak of CDV last October, would be difficult.

“We will not be able to relocate all of them back to Dalkhania range. We are looking at various options,” Vasavda said. The 1,400 sq km national park is divided into two zones and Dalkhania falls in the east zone, far away from the popular tourist attraction, Sasan, which is in the west zone.

AJT Johnsingh, senior ecologist and former Wildlife Institute of India (WII) scientist, said the relocation will have to be “done carefully” so that it does not result in “another conflict” in Gir. In 2018, 25 lions in Gir died because of territorial fights.

VB Mathur, director of the Dehradun-based WII, said the relocation of lions in Gir will be a learning experience for wildlife management as there are “no guidelines” on the release of wild animals given CDV medication. “Through this experiment, we all can learn important lessons for betterment of both species and habitat management,” he said.

According to a reply submitted in Gujarat assembly on Friday, 204 lions died in Gir in 2017 and 2018, including the deaths of 36 because of various viral diseases such as CDV and streptococcus, which spreads through highly contagious bacteria.


RE: Bigcats News - Sanju - 02-23-2019

Tiger Zinda Hai... (tiger is still alive in Gujarat- Baka gujarat na tiger )