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RE: Bigcats News - Apollo - 09-05-2014

Nagzira's Prince travels 80km to Pench

They're hemmed into small pockets. Even there they face threats. Yet, the region's tigers defy all obstacles like canals and dangers like roads, rail lines, and open wells to migrate great distances.

Two such instances have been recorded in the latest report on ?Tiger dispersal in Maharashtra' based on camera trap results in Pench Tiger Reserve (PTR) and Navegaon-Nagzira Tiger Reserve (NNTR) submitted to the Maharashtra forest department by Wildlife Conservation Trust (WCT), Mumbai.

A young tiger nicknamed ?Prince' was photographed by Pratik Puranik, a nature enthusiast from Gondia in Nagzira wildlife sanctuary in May 2010. Four years later, on March 26, 2014, the tiger was photographed in West Pench by WCT staff and was coded PTR-T8. It was also captured on camera traps in Pench, Madhya Pradesh. Most likely, the home range of this adult male tiger is spread over the two reserves.

The study highlights the fact that the tiger dispersed from Navegaon-Nagzira to Pench through a human-dominated and heavily fragmented landscape. "It is important to note that PTR-T8 dispersed over a minimum straight line distance of approximately 80km passing through the forests of Mogarkasa-Bawanthadi in addition to human-dominated areas including NH-7 to reach Pench," says Anish Andheria, President of WCT.

"In Bor, we photographed a tiger in January-February 2014. Officially listed as ?BNB T2' and nicknamed ?Bajirao' by local staff. This tiger is the dominant male in Bor & New Bor. He was caught on camera traps in both sanctuaries. We came across two photographs of the same tiger in Kalmeshwar range of Nagpur division taken by the forest department in 2012 and 2013," Andheria said.

The distance between Kalmeshwar and Bor is approximately 20km. This tiger may have been born in Kalmeshwar range and dispersed and settled down in Bor making it a case of tiger dispersal from ?sink' to ?source' population, he said.

The surveys were conducted in Pench, Umred, Bor & Navegaon-Nagzira as part of the Phase III of the ?All India Tiger Monitoring Exercise' by WCT to assist the forest department. The WCT team consisting of Aditya Joshi, Ankur Kali, Milind Pariwakam and Vishal Bansod compared photographs of tigers from Nagzira, Bor, Umred and Pench.

"While assisting the staff of Nagzira sanctuary with camera trapping, we wanted to compare the photos of tigers captured this year with those of previous years. To do so, we collected photos taken before 2014 and added them to the database. Such systematic databases help identify the time period that a tiger is dominant before being dislodged by a competitor and also helps identify dispersing tigers," says Andheria.

These two new evidences of tiger dispersal, along with the old records once again stress on importance of preserving corridors to maintain genetic diversity of tiger populations.

The report says all the small tiger populations of Maharashtra fall short of the recommended 20 breeding females limit stipulated by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA). Therefore, these populations are highly dependent on immigration and emigration of young dispersing tigers such as BNB-T2 and PTR-T8 for genetic viability.

"These cases reiterate the wisdom behind declaring new wildlife sanctuaries in the state. Simultaneously, they also highlight the threats faced by young dispersing tigers and lays emphasis on the need for immediate mitigation measures to be incorporated in the implementation plans of canals and highways," said senior wildlife officials.


1) BAJIRAO: The tiger titled BNB-T2 was captured in a camera trap in Bor & New Bor (Wardha) on January 21, 2014. The same tiger was captured in Kalmeshwar (Nagpur) on December 11, 2012. The possible path taken by this tiger was Khapa, Kawadimet, Ghubadi, Malakapur, Umari, Adegaon and Deoli beats in Nagpur.

2) PRINCE: The tiger PTR-T8 was photographed as a cub in May 2010. Prince was camera trapped in West Pench on March 26, 2014 during estimation exercise. It travelled 80km via Lendezari, Nakadongari and Tumsar ranges of Bhandara division. Ironically, these areas are leased out to FDCM.


A) Jai: A young male from Nagzira travelled 120km to reach Paoni range of Umred-Karhandla sanctuary in September 2013. It travelled through New Nagzira, Kisanpur, Kardi, Kesalwada and Koka and later crossed NH6 between Bhandara & Sakoli followed by Wainganga river to reach Umred-Karhandla.

B) T4: In its preliminary report on genetic connectivity of tigers, WCT pointed out case of a tiger (BRM/T4) from Brahmapuri, which was photo-captured by tourists inside Tadoba. The dispersal route covered Mindhala, Dongargaon, Govindpur, Navargaon and Neri rounds of Bramhapuri. It is the same corridor which will be fragmented by Human dam.

C) MP Pench: On April 23, 2011 a radio-collared tiger that went missing from MP Pench was traced in Mansinghdeo. The tiger was resident of Pivarthadi. It covered 45km through Pivarthadi, Bodhalzira, Bakhari, Kirangisarra & Mansinghdeo.

D) Kanha: In Jan-Feb 2008, a radio-collared tigress from Kanha traversed 250km in 4 months to reach Pench (Maharashtra).

F) Kanha-Nagarjunasagar: In 2013, Aditya Joshi's paper showed genetic evidence of tiger dispersal from Kanha to Nagarjunasagar (AP), a distance of over 650km making it one of the longest distances recorded.

G) Dudhwa: In 2012, a young tiger travelled more than 250km from South Kheri to end up hardly 25km from Lucknow in Rahmankhera forest. It was translocated to the wild.



RE: Bigcats News - Apollo - 09-05-2014

 Night traffic ban saves many animal lives in Bandipur 

Road kill inside the reserve has dropped by more than 70 pc: Experts

Road kill, which was a regular occurrence inside the Bandipur Tiger Reserve, has trickled down in recent years, owing to night traffic ban.

With two national highways, NH-67 (towards Ooty) and NH-212 (towards Wayanad), passing through the reserve, nocturnal animals were at perennial risk before the ban.
According to Sridharmurthy, retired executive engineer of National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), traffic density in both NH-212 and NH-67 was 15,000-18,000 passenger car units during the day, which translated to about 12,000 to 14,000 vehicles plying on the roads on a daily basis.
Speaking about the road kill inside the reserve prior to the ban, wildlife film-makers B S Krupakar and Senani Hegde said that several species of nocturnal animals such as mouse deer and leopards had benefited from the ban.

“A few years ago, the reserve would witness a road kill almost everyday. The major reason being the speed at which the vehicles plied on the highways inside the reserve,” Senani said. Heavy vehicles, which transported vegetables and other commodities during the night were major killers, he added.
“Following the implementation of the night traffic ban, road kill has come down by more than 70 per cent,” he said.
  Chief Conservator of Forests and Director of Bandipur Tiger Reserve H C Kantharaju said that following the ban in early 2010, the average number of road kill reported is four to six every year. “Earlier, the combined number of road kill along the two national highways averaged more than 60 every year. During the current year, only five cases of road kill have been reported,” he said.
However, some parties have filed a petition in the Supreme Court, seeking the Court to lift the ban. Judgement regarding the petition is pending.

On the expansion of NH-212, he said that 18.8 km stretch of the highway, which passes through the reserve will not be expanded. “Expansion of the stretch has been dropped from the project plan of the NHAI, following opposition from environmentalists,” Kantharaju said.



RE: Bigcats News - sanjay - 09-11-2014

It's India only where tiger can survive in wild

Dr. Yadvendradev Jhala, is working day in and day out to collect data from the forests across India and then analyze it in the laboratory at WII to arrive at the much-awaited tiger numbers.

Dr. Jhala has been a pioneer in the field of tiger conservation and one of the key men who not only devised the scientific methodology of estimating tigers but also implemented it across the 500,000 sq km of forest across India.

According to him If the tiger has best chances of survival anywhere on this planet, it is in India.....listen to him as he talks about basics on tiger monitoring & associated challenges in conservation.... Or read it full.


RE: Bigcats News - Apollo - 09-13-2014

Dead LION found in freezer during inspection at restaurant near to zoo

*This image is copyright of its original author

The animal's body was discovered stuffed next to food which was due to be served to unsuspecting customers

The body of a dead lion was found in a restaurant's freezer during an inspection by environmental health officers.

The animal's corpse was discovered stuffed next to food which was due to be served to unsuspecting customers.The restaurant's owner told health inspectors the lion was donated to him by a nearby zoo to feed to his pack of dogs.

The shocking discovery has been revealed by Ian Brightmore, health protection manager at Chichester District Council in west Sussex."But he is remaining tight-lipped about when or where he found the frozen animal.

He said: "When I was working in another area I came across a dead lion in a freezer."The food establishment was near a zoo and the owner kept pack hounds so it was food for them."Because the lion was kept in a place where food for human consumption was stored, of course we had to take action.

"Environmental health officers have the powers to close down restaurants if food safety practices are suitably insufficient.The West Sussex-based veteran health officer added: "The first thing we do is to seek cooperation in putting things right and this usually works.

"In situations where it doesn't we can serve a hygiene improvement notice, which legally requires the owner to make improvements by a certain period of time."If we find something we deem to be dangerous, we can serve an emergency prohibition notice. That means a premises must shut until that problem is resolved.

"Most take the decision to voluntarily close so as not to draw attention to the public but for those who refuse, we can go to the court where the magistrate will confirm the notice and turn it into an order."It will then close until we are happy that it's safe to re-open, normally that takes two or three days, although a cockroach infestation can take longer as they're difficult to get rid of.

"In the most extreme cases, we have the powers of prosecution."Since the lion was the only health code violation the restaurant was allowed to continue trading as normal.


RE: Bigcats News - Apollo - 09-13-2014

Andhra Pradesh plans for a new Tiger Reserve

Andhra Pradesh is thinking of notifying a new tiger reserve in the Seshachalam hills comprising Tirupati and Kadapa forest areas. Telangana already has two tiger reserves at Kawal and Amramabad. 

Sources in the forest department said that camera traps have to be installed to check the presence of tigers in Seshachalam hills and continuity of vegetation has to be improved to connect Seshachalm with the Nallamalais. 

At present the Nagarjunasagar Srisa-ilam Tiger Reserve of AP which covers around 3,700 square km hosts around 75 per cent of the tiger population. 

Officials have a database of 43 tigers which are identified by stripes after they are photographed by camera traps. Similarly, in the Amrabad Tiger reserve of Telangana it is estimated that there are 16 to 17 tigers and the database has 11 tigers with stripes. 

While Guntur, Prakasham and Kurnool falls in the AP tiger reserve, Mahbubnagar and Nalgonda is in Telangana. As per fresh estimates it is estimated that there would be 65 to 80 tigers in both AP and TS.


RE: Bigcats News - sanjay - 09-14-2014

Man-eater leopard killing drunk men from Didihat, Uttarakhand

A man-eating leopard in Uttarakhand has become famous for his habit of killing late night drunker. Kumaon hills, Didihat, is living under the terror of the this man eater cat for more than two and half years, In this time interval, the leopard has been involved in killing a more than 12 villagers. Due to his fear the locals return home before sunset.

The leopard has affected normal life in 40-50 villages in Didihat region of Pithoragarh district since 2012. The Uttarakhand Forest Department officially declared the leopard a man- eater last month and issued warrant to kill it.

Despite repeated attempts the leopards remains elusive.

Pithoragarh’s District Forest Officer Y. K. Singh says, "This month we had sent a team of shooters in the affected village, but they were unsuccessful in their mission. This is the third attempt made so far”.

Most of the villagers who were killed were in an inebriated state. The Didihat man-eater began its killing spree on January 23, 2012, claiming the life of 46-year-old Mohan from Simar village. A month later, young Manohar Singh from Sanikhet village became its second victim.

With six kills in 2012 and five last year, the man-eater has terrorised Didihat.

Even this year, the leopard killed two people. The last recorded incident on August 1, 2014 when Umed Singh (44) from Badeth village lost his life.

Wildlife expert Lakhpat Rawat says, "After the forest department issued the warrant, I visited some of the affected areas in Didihat. We even spotted the animal, but failed to shoot it down. The leopard is old and possibly without canines and it appears he has developed a taste for the human flesh. The animal is even consuming intestines, which is a surprising aspect”.

RE: Bigcats News - Apollo - 09-15-2014

Terai forests under threat

What was done years back by forest department staff members to avoid 'adverse entries' in service book has now come to haunt terai forest of UP with 'adverse' impact on the region's wildlife. Abode to tigers and varied wildlife, vast terai grasslands may not be the same anymore.

Reason is `pockets of teak' (sagaun) plantation found interspersed in terai's predominantly sal forests. Clusters of teak have been found in Gonda and surrounding areas. When interrogated, local staff said they planted teak at places where sal plantation failed.

"It was not that sal trees did not grow in these pockets at all but staff did not wait for the next plantation season. They planted teak to show that plantation was successful," says a senior official in the department. The department has to find out at what all places in terai belt such pockets exist.

The 5,000 sq km of sal forest in terai is the `main support system' of rich vegetation and wildlife of the region. Sal supports undergrowth, which is necessary for the survival of wildlife as lot of animals thrive and exist in thick undergrowths.

Teak, on the contrary, is a variety from dry and arid region which supports no "ground storey vegetation" (undergrowth). "If we have to keep teak or not depends on the extent of its plantation in terai," says the official.

Teak will bring with it the ecology related to it which will be detrimental to sal forests.



RE: Bigcats News - Roflcopters - 09-15-2014

(08-27-2014, 11:07 PM)'Pckts' Wrote:
*This image is copyright of its original author
27 Aug 2014. The Terrace Male is Dead.[i] [/i]The Desert Lion Project is sad to report that the “Terrace Male” (Xpl-68) was killed near Tomakas village sometime after midday on 24 Aug 2014. Xpl-68 was with the Okongwe lionesses when the incident occurred. Data from their satellite collars show that the Okongwe females immediately moved into the northern Okongwe Mountains – possibly due to the disturbance caused by the killing of Xpl-68. Furthermore, the satellite collar of Xpl-68 was removed and burnt. The charred remains of the satellite collar were located +-100 metres north of the carcass (photo: top right). It would appear that the people responsible for killing the “Terrace Male” wanted to hide the evidence. This is an unfortunate development because the incident could stimulate a public outcry that may question many fundamental aspects of the conservation, communal conservancy and tourism efforts in the Region.


Very sad and disgusting that this is still going on.


He made headlines recently, It's unfortunate. RIP

RE: Bigcats News 2 - Apollo - 09-16-2014

 Leopard found dead on tree

*This image is copyright of its original author

The animal was trapped at H.D. Kote and radio-collared: A leopard was found dead with its legs entwined in the branches of a tree at Kalahalli village in Jayapura hobli about 20 km from Mysore on Friday.

The four-year-old leopard was a radio-collared animal, and was the same animal that was trapped by the Forest Department at H.D. Kote on March 21 and released into the Nagarahole National Park.V. Karikalan, Deputy Conservator of Forests, Mysore Division, told that they received information around 10.30 a.m. on Friday that a leopard was found dead and rushed to the spot.

The carcass was found about 30 feet from the ground and was lowered for examination.While the immediate cause of death is not clear, post-mortem reports indicate that there was severe bacterial infection of the heart, liver and spleen. 

“We have collected the viscera and other samples from the carcass and sent it to the laboratory for analysis,” Mr. Karikalan said.“The information we received was that a leopard was found dead on a tree and the carcass had been hanging for two days,” he said. 

But rigor mortis had not set in and the carcass had not putrefied.Dr. Nagaraj, veterinarian, and his team, which conducted the post-mortem, suspect the death to have occurred about seven to eight hours before locals sighted the carcass.

No external injuries

A careful examination of the carcass indicated that there were no external injuries near the neck or in the oesophagus, ruling out death due to external factors, he added. 

It is suspected that the leopard was perched atop the tree and when it died its leg may have got entwined in the branches.Mr. Karikalan said the leopard’s movement had been monitored continuously till recently. It was last tracked at Malleshwara Betta near Chamalapura last month.

But a wildlife biologist, who was monitoring its movement, described it as missing after some days following quarrying activities in the region. But due to some technical problem in the collar, the authorities had lost track of it over month ago.


RE: Bigcats News 2 - Apollo - 09-16-2014

Govt plans creches for cubs, real time monitoring of reserves to protect tigers

In an innovative step taken by environment and forest minister Prakash Javdekar, the Centre will set up a number of ‘creches’ for tiger cubs who get estranged from their mothers. 

Stray tiger cubs will now be cared for by the government and sent across to specially designed enclosures in national parks or zoos.In an innovative step taken by environment and forest minister Prakash Javdekar, the Centre will set up a number of 'creches' for tiger cubs who get estranged from their mothers."

This will be done soon", Javdekar said on Friday.As part of other measures to protect tigers, a real-time monitoring of tiger reserves using management information system (MIS) will also be launched soon by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) and the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau. 

The new system will link all 47 tiger reserves in 18 States.Besides, the ministry has recently approved a Special Tiger Protection Force which would start functioning in Melghat and Navegaon Nagzira tiger reserves in Maharashtra.

The Centre seems to be taking a series of measures for wildlife conservation which also includes creating six sensor-run gates on National Highway 39 (NH-39) to send signals to vehicles including trains passing through the forested areas when animals, especially elephants pass through.Elephants have been killed and injured by trains in north Bengal while passing through the corridors over the last few years. These gates will be in place in the next six months, Javdekar said. 

Javdekar, who recently visited the home of the Indian rhinoceros at Kaziranga National Park, has already announced that an anti-poaching Rhino Protection Force made up of local youth will be created and funded by the Centre.

The minister also said that the government is also planning to burn tiger and other animal skins, horns of rhinos and tusks of elephants that were seized from poachers, to discourage their sale in the market as that is the main motivation for killing these animals.


RE: Bigcats News 2 - Apollo - 09-16-2014

Orang likely to become fourth tiger reserve in Assam

The Rajiv Gandhi Orang National Park, about 150 km from here, is likely to become the fourth tiger reserve in the state, with the state forest department planning to submit a proposal to the Union ministry of environment, forest and climate change (MoEFCC) soon.The proposal will be submitted following National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA)'s recommendation for notifying Orang as a tiger reserve. 

The existing tiger reserves in the state are Kaziranga, Manas and Nameri.The Mangaldoi Wildlife Division has already submitted the proposal to principal chief conservator of forests (Wildlife) R P Agarwal. "We will send this proposal to the MoEFCC once we get the clearance from the state government. 

Hopefully, we will be able to submit the proposal this month," said Agarwal.The 79.28 sqkm park has 25.23 tigers per 100 square km, which is considered to be high big cat density. The park, located on the northern banks of the Brahmaputra, also has 100 rhinos as per the 2012 estimate, besides other animals.

Orang is connected with Kaziranga on the southern banks of the Brahmaputra by numerous sand islands. The NTCA's report titled 'Status of tigers, co-predators and prey in India' in 2010 underscored the fact that tiger population in Kaziranga is contiguous with Orang, connected through the sand islands of the Brahmaputra.

The NTCA has also pointed out that Kaziranga and Orang taken together will have about 125 tigers.According to the proposal submitted to PCCF by Mangaldoi divisional officer Sushil Kumar Daila, once the protected area is notified as a tiger reserve, the stretch of the Brahmaputra between Orang and Kaziranga, along with Laokhowa and Burhachapori wildlife sanctuaries, can effectively be effectively secured as a buffer zone. 

Daila said the total area of the proposed Orang Tiger Reserve will be 790.17 square km, including 44.06 square km of Burhachapori and 70.10 square km of Laokhowa wildlife sanctuaries and 596.73 sq km stretch of the Brahmaputra serving as a tiger corridor.

"Once Orang is declared as a tiger reserve, its boundaries will be secured which will reduce human-tiger conflict. The biggest threat to tigers of Orang is retaliatory killings by villagers on the fringes of the park. In the last 10 years, at least 13 tigers were poisoned to death by villagers," said Daila.


RE: Bigcats News 2 - sanjay - 09-16-2014

Thanks Apollo, Very sad to see the leopard in this condition

RE: Bigcats News 2 - Pckts - 09-17-2014

Makes me extremely sad to see that leopard hanging from a tree. Humans are disgusting at times.

RE: Bigcats News 2 - Apollo - 09-20-2014

Radio-collar infection kills tigress in MP

The first tigress in India to be translocated to the wild after being hand-bred was on Friday found dead of an infection caused by its radio collar at the Panna Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh. T4 had earlier being showcased as the biggest success story of a big-cat breeding experiment.

"It seems the radio-collar caused infection around her neck," MP's chief wildlife warden Narendra Kumar told. "Rigor mortis set in around the maggot-infested wounds. This is the second incident of collar-related infection. In the first case, we had prior information and timely action was taken to remove the collar. 

This time, the wound was spotted only during autopsy."The tiger reserve's staff received 'mortality signals' (signals from a constant location) from T4 at 6.45 pm on Thursday. 

On Friday, it was found dead near Mandla range in the Panna reserve, said officials.Hand-reared after being rescued when two weeks old from the Kanha Tiger Reserve, T4 was released in Panna in 2009. 

She had three litters in the wild. T4's translocation and breeding at Panna had created a new chapter in tiger conservation history.T4 and her two siblings were orphaned when their mother was killed at Kanha. Park officials picked up the litter and hand-reared the cubs with the plan to reintroduce them into the wild. T4 was the first among them to be chosen for the experiment.

After being released in Panna, T4 had struggled in the initial months. Another tiger, T3, had helped her to hunt in the wild.In 2009, the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) had criticized a 'wildlife intelligence report' that claimed radio-collaring had caused the deaths of tigers in the Panna National Park.

The report had said radio-collaring hampered natural movement, caused neck infections and was used by poachers to track tigers. Asad Rahmani, the then BNHS director, had told reporters that radio-collaring was an efficient method that had been in use for over 40 years


RE: Bigcats News 2 - Apollo - 09-20-2014

Report on tigers released

A report titled "Tigers of the Trans-boundary Terai Arc Landscape" was released on Wednesday at the second stocktaking meet of the Global Tiger Recovery Programme (GTRP), being held in Dhaka from 13-16 September 2014.

A culmination of collaborative action between the governments and forest officials of India and Nepal with the active support of WWF teams in both countries, the report details the status of tiger and ungulate prey species populations in the trans-boundary Terai Arc Landscape (TAL), and documents the movement of tigers between forests in India and Nepal.

The assessment was carried out in seven Protected Areas and Reserve Forests in India, as well as five Protected Areas, three biological corridors (protected forests) and adjoining forest patches in Nepal. The report reiterates the importance of the trans-boundary nature of the Terai Arc Landscape, and the importance of maintaining existing connectivity in this landscape between the two countries.

Speaking on the occasion, WWF-India Secretary General and CEO, Mr. Ravi Singh said, "The findings of the report on the tigers of the Terai are pertinent. Wildlife populations and ecosystem functions are shared across political borders and collaborative action between the Governments of Nepal and India as well as the continued efforts of civil society in both countries, are crucial to the survival of the tiger and other large mammals in this region. 

The Terai is a unique habitat historically known for its beauty and diverse ecosystem. A connected wildlife population across some of the Protected Areas in the two countries and the movement of tigers between them via corridors, serves as a basis for both Nepal and India to strengthen protection protocols and carefully plan the implementation of development projects.

"The report, an outcome of a unique initiative from both sides of the Indo-Nepal border marks a strong and positive beginning for improved coordination between the forest departments, government agencies and NGOs to help restore the critical tiger habitats in this region. The government agencies involved in the joint survey were the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) and Department of National Park and Wildlife Conservation (DNPWC) from India and Nepal respectively.

The GTRP conference, reviewing the progress made in the implementation of the GTRP towards the Tx2 objectives that aim to double the number of wild tigers in the world by the year 2022, was attended by senior government officials from 13 tiger range countries.

Urging all stakeholders to commit to government-led actions and initiatives and maintain efforts towards projected goals and most importantly, conducting an accurate estimate of wild tiger populations in each tiger range country by 2016, the conference was an opportunity for governments to critically examine the progress made to date and accelerate action over the remaining eight years