The good, the bad and the ugly in Tadoba in 2013


By Atul Dhamankar

Madhuri's four cubs, Lara, Sonam, Geeta & Mona drink from Telia dam (c) Atul Dhamanker

Madhuri’s four cubs, Lara, Sonam, Geeta & Mona drink from Telia dam (c) Atul Dhamanker

The Good News

1) The tigress Madhuri successfully raised all her four female cubs named Sonam, Lara, Geeta and Mona to adulthood , an amazing feat for a young tigress with only her second litter.

2) Kori, a Wagdoh tigress in the Moharli range also triumphed with her three cubs, one male and two females raised to adulthood.

3) The beleaguered male, Crooked Tail, has not given up hope in getting back his prime territory within the Moharli range. Today he is on the edge of achieving his objective – an unusual feat by a once vanquished male.

4) One more tigress from Ambathira area gave birth to a litter of four cubs, enhancing the reputation of Tadoba’s fertile tigresses, including those of Nira, Laxmi and  Madhuri.

Restored to grassy meadows, the recently relocated Navegaon village. Dec 2013. (c) Atul Dhamanker

Restored to grassy meadows, the recently relocated Navegaon village. Dec 2013. (c) Atul Dhamanker

5) The village of Navegaon has been completely shifted from the tiger reserve and its fields are restored to excellent grasslands.  After only four months large herd of nilgai, including over 25 recently, and wild gaur have moved in. This area is also important for the tigress Chaya who has two cubs and a frequently seen leopardess wither  three cubs.

The Bad News

1)  The forest department has still not opened some of the best tiger territory like Katezari, Kala Aamba, Bhanush Khindi, and Ambat hira, so my ability to monitor these tigers has been impossible.  Tadoba has only opened 2 to  4% of its entire area to nature tourism, even though it can open up 20%. Why?

2)  On the 15th November a big fight took place between two huge territorial males, Sherkhan and Kolara on the Kosekanar road, which resulted in serious injuries to both tigers. Bad publicity resulted from the fact that tourist tried to separate the two males, interference in the natural world that must not be tolerated in such a sanctuary for wild animals.

The aptly named "Scarface". He ain't pretty - but he was effective! (c) Atul Dhamanker

The aptly named “Scarface”. He ain’t pretty – but he was effective! (c) Atul Dhamanker

3)  Scarface, the dominant male of the Moharli range, who hold prime and prey rich territory from the Telia dam to the Khatoda gate, is about to loose his prime territory and be forced to move towards the buffer zone forests, extricating a well-loved and very distinguishable male from the Tadoba landscape.

Shivaji - the massive territorial male tiger of Tadoba's closed Kolsa range (c) Atul Dhamnaker

Shivaji – the massive territorial male tiger of Tadoba’s closed Kolsa range (c) Atul Dhamnaker

4)  The Kolsa range is still not open from the Moharli side, which it was in 2012 before the supreme court ruling, so monitoring the famous tigers like Shivaji and Chitra and her now three fully grown cubs is not possible.

5)  Madhuri, our star tigress, is now not seen in her main territory of Telia dam and we get no clue of her whereabouts after she left her four female cubs during the last monsoon.  We hope she is well and has given birth to new cubs somewhere in the area of the Jacana gate.

Credits: Tiger Nation

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