Plan to shift male tiger to Sariska put on hold

Rajasthan govt has put off plans to shift one more male tiger to Sariska reserve for now.

New Delhi: Rajasthan government has put off plans to shift one more male tiger to Sariska reserve for now to ensure disturbance-free habitat to a tiger couple which
has mated.

"I have been told by the state wildlife officials that the tiger couple have met. We are hoping for some good news (birth of cubs). The relocation of another male tiger at this
moment can be risky as it might disturb the couple. Hence no new male tiger in Sariska for now," Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said.

The news of mating of the tigers had brought some cheer to Sariska which last month lost one of its five translocated big cats. The reserve in Rajasthan had lost all its native tigers by 2004-05, mostly to widespread poaching,after which the five tigers, two of them males, were translocated there since 2008 to revive their population.

After the male tiger was found dead in mysterious circumstances, with strong possibility of being poisoned, the Centre had approved the state government`s proposal to bring a
stray tiger to Sariska reserve which had moved from Ranthambore park to Bharatpur sanctuary.

But it has been put on hold now.

"We are monitoring the movement of the radio-collared tiger couple and we have got signals that they are in contact with each other. Their mating might result in birth of the
cubs, we are hopeful," an expert from Dehradun- based Wildlife institute of India (WII) said.

"Introduction of a new tiger in the habitat presently may lead to a fight between the two male big cats," he said.

Both of them were spotted together in Kalighatti area of Sariska reserve. Also, this time the tigress is different and not from same gene pool as that the male as was feared
earlier, he added.

While Sriska waits to get its first litter,translocation of felines in Panna sanctuary in Madhya Pradesh has yielded results with two tigress giving birth to cubs, much to the delight of wildlife enthusiasts.