First tigress reassured, with radio collar for transfer to Rajaji tiger reserve
After years of waiting, the Uttarakhand forest department reassured the state’s first tigress in the Corbett landscape on Wednesday, to move her to the Rajaji Tiger Reserve.
JS Suhag, wildlife director of the Uttarakhand forest department said: “The first tigress in Uttarakhand was tranquilized in the buffer area of the Corbett Tiger Reserve on Wednesday. The tigress will be moved to the Rajaji Tiger Reserve on Thursday as part of the project to increase the density of the big cat there. ”
The tiger transfer project to the western part of Rajaji was approved by the central government in 2016.
Last September, a team from the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) visited Rajaji to conduct a reconnaissance for the translocation exercise and suggested a gentle release of a pair of tigers on the western side of the reserve.
In a soft release, the tigers are released into a large enclosed area where they are kept for a few days to check the animals for any illness before being fully released into the wild.
A total of five tigers, including two females, will be moved to the Rajaji Tiger Reserve. .
At present, the Rajaji Tiger Reserve has around 37 tigers with only two tigers in its western part, which is spread over 570 square kilometers. The reserve has a carrying capacity of 83 tigers, a recent survey by the state forest department revealed. The eastern and western parts of the reserve are divided by a busy traffic corridor that makes it difficult for tigers to migrate between the two parts.
On Wednesday, the director of Corbett wrote to Garhwal Motor Owners Union Limited indicating the conditions before starting a bus service between Pakhro-Morghatti-Kalagarh-Ramnagar.
Rahul, director of the Corbett Tiger Reserve, who uses his first name in the letter, wrote that this bus service will continue until new orders with only one-way traffic in a single day.
The conditions further state that the buses will not run during the heavy monsoons, the fare will be charged only at the gates of Pakhro and Dhela, from a wildlife conservation point of view, two forest officers will be able to travel daily at no cost. The bus will not be able to navigate before sunrise and after sunset.
During wildfire season, bus drivers will be held responsible if a passenger throws any combustible items off the bus, such as matches, and bus personnel will assist the forest department by reporting fire incidents. The bus will not stop anywhere while crossing the tiger reserve area and no one will be able to disembark. The conditions also state that wildlife will have the first right to cross roads and, if injured in the process, action will be taken under the relevant sections of the Wildlife (Protection) Act.