Monday, April 25, 2011

Two tiger cubs spotted at Ranthambore National Park

Jaipur, April 25 (IANS) Two new tiger cubs have been spotted at the Ranthambore National Park in Rajasthan's Sawai Madhopur district, taking the total number of cubs in the park to 12, and bringing cheer to wildlife enthusiasts.

The cubs of tigress named T-8 were spotted Saturday in Zone Number 8 of Chidikheda area in Phalodi Range of Ranthambore National Park.

"The tiger cubs were spotted in the morning shift of tiger safari. They were roaming around with their mother T-8," Nature Guides Association president Atiq Mohammad said Monday.

The sight enthralled the tourists who frantically took pictures of the cubs and their mother.

"The cubs strayed in the forest area, but the mother continued to hang around," Atiq added.

The guides, who had taken the tourists into the park, immediately informed the authorities. "We have set up 3-4 trap cameras in the area and increased tracking," said a senior park officer.

According to forest officials, the park houses 31 adult tigers. Other wild animals found there include leopards, wild pigs, deer species and monkeys.

Ranthambore National Park is spread over an area of around 400 sq km. If the adjoining Sawai Man Singh sanctuary, over 175 km from Jaipur, is taken into consideration, the total area is around 500 sq km.

The park was declared a wildlife sanctuary in 1957, and gained the protection of the central government's Project Tiger scheme in 1974. It was designated a national park in 1981.

The latest tiger census puts the total number of tigers in India at 1,706, marking an increase of 295 over the last census in 2006.

Forest union threatens to shut tiger reserves

TNN Apr 26, 2011, 03.07am IST

NAGPUR: The Maharashtra Forest Guards, Forest Employees and Forest Workers' Sanghatana has threatened to close down Pench, Tadoba-Andhari and Melghat tiger reserves if wages of van majoors are not paid immediately.

Working president of the Sanghatana, Siraj Patel, informed that over 1,500 forest workers (van majoors) in the three tiger reserves had not been paid wages for the past four months. These workers were last paid in December. Patel's threat comes a day before Union minister of state for environment and forests Jairam Ramesh is visiting Nagpur for opening the first regional office of National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA).

Van majoors are backbone of any protected area as mostly they man the protection huts deep inside tiger reserves and conduct patrolling. "It has become a chronic problem but forest officials have failed to address it. NTCA has released the money but why is wildlife wing not paying the workers," Patel asked.

"We will not allow tourists to enter these three reserves, if wages are not paid in eight days," warned Patel. Wildlife wing officials, who did not wish to be quoted, said: "This year tiger reserves did not receive the second instalment under the centrally sponsored scheme (CSS) and hence the problem."

They said NTCA released Rs 41.39 lakh for TATR; Rs 13 lakh for Pench and Rs 61.35 lakh for Melghat towards second instalment on March 31, the last day of financial year. "We could not spend the money in one day. Now, unless Centre revalidates the payment, the funds will be kept in abeyance," official sources informed.

Patel said big talk was being made to save the tigers in the name of tiger capital but both NTCA and state government had failed to address the core issue of releasing wages to workers on time.

State government apathy was worse. The financial year begins from April 1 and MoEF releases its share under CSS in September. Shockingly, state finance department releases a separate GR, usually in January, to release this money.

"It's a vicious circle. As first instalment is delayed, utilisation certificates (UCs) are not submitted in time. Unless UCs for first instalment are submitted, MoEF doesn't release second instalment," officials stated.

Patel alleged at a time when tiger numbers had gone up in the state, no steps were being taken to create space for additional tigers. "There is no capacity building, no proper postings and time-bound promotions. How can you expect the field staff to be motivated and protect the tigers," the veteran union leader asked.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Tiger Easter!

TIGERS & LIONS LIKE EASTER TREATS TOO! Watch Zabu the white tiger destroy her easter egg filled with catnip and leave the mess for Cameron the lion to investigate!

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Big Cat Scares! :)

Big cats can be very scary, but so can Big Cat Rescue volunteers!Sorry interns! If you would like to take part in our intern program please visit: