Tiger on prowl, officials on toes
BANGALORE, Thursday 3rd November 2011
A middle-aged tiger spoiled the sweet nap of residents living in Kothanur and surrounding villages in Madikeri on the fringes of Nagarhole National Park.
For the last two weeks, the big cat has killed over 19 cattle heads and two goats, which has created panic among residents who fear leaving their houses.
The tiger is said to be injured and is finding it difficult to hunt. It was seen near human habitat targeting cattle. At one go, last week, it had killed eight cattle and two goats belonging to a farmer near Kothanur. The tiger was unable to drag the prey inside forests due to the injury, said Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) B K Singh. He told Express that tigers are very shy animals and will never enter villages in search of food unless they are old or injured. According to information available from local forest officials, the tiger is said to be injured because of which it was entering villages. On Monday too, it� killed two cattle in the same area and managed to eat only parts of it.
Speaking about the steps taken by the department to nab the tiger, Singh said they have placed iron cages at seven places with prey, expecting the big cat to come and fall into the trap. “We are optimistic of nabbing the tiger, treat it and send it a zoo as wild tigers are very much in demand. So far, we have not decided on which zoo the tiger will be sent to. It will be decided only after we catch it.”
On its movement, PCCF said as per information received on Monday evening, the tiger is said to have entered Brahmagiri Sanctuary. The officials of that sanctuary have been alerted and asked to remain on vigil. According to recent tiger census, there are around 400 tigers in Nagarhole, Mudhumalai, Wayanad and Bandipur National Parks. When they are in large numbers, man-animal conflicts are bound to occur. However, the forest department is taking all steps to ensure safety and security of� people residing in areas near these forests. The tiger population across the country is dwindling. This has forced the department to step up conservation. “We want peaceful coexistence of wildlife with humans,” he noted.