Tiger sighted at Valmikinagar
Sanjeev Kumar Verma, TNN 16 November 2009, 06:02am IST
PATNA: Dwindling population of tiger across the reserves in India has been a matter of concern for wildlife lovers. But reports emanating from Bihar's Valmiki Tiger Reserve suggest that all is not lost.
It pertains to sighting of a tiger at Valmikinagar __ Bihar's only tiger reserve. Forest guards and tiger trackers sighted the tiger in compartment no. 49 of Someshwar block of the reserve on Saturday.
"Though reports of tiger being sighted by villagers or SSB personnel have come in the past few months, this is after a long gap that forest personnel have sighted a tiger," reserve director J P Gupta told TOI over phone on Sunday.
He said, "The tiger was seen almost 15 km east of the core area from where reports of tiger sighting generally come. It is a good indication in the sense that movement of tigers is taking place even outside the areas hitherto considered to be their den."
Field officials have now been told to find out the exact location of the place of sighting of the tiger using the GPS device and also to record the tiger movement path using its pugmarks.
"This will help us keep a tab on the movement of the tiger and also on its movement path so that poachers cannot harm the feline," Gupta said.
Saturday's sighting apart, villagers had sighted another tiger in the Harnatarn range of the reserve about a fortnight back. "Locals use paths which pass through the core area of the reserve. They sighted a tiger on their way to Harnatarn and reported it to us immediately," said the reserve director.
Incidentally, these two sightings have come close on the heels of sighting of a tigress and two cubs between August 1 and 4 by SSB personnel and villagers in Manpur area located on eastern fringes of the reserve.
Prior to the these three sightings, tigers were not seen so frequently in the reserve and, according to reports, the two sightings in the past few years were reported in November 2005 and March 2008. Both were captured on camera.