Jun 5, 2015
PILIBHIT: The pall of gloom that had descended over the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve following reports of dwindling tiger population over the past few years seems to have been lifted. As many as eight tiger cubs were reportedly spotted by PTR field staff five during the installation of camera traps for tiger counting. The age of these cubs is being assessed between two months and a year. With the sighting of these cubs, PTR officials are now expressing hopes that there might be more cubs in the jungle area. The actual number of cubs would be confirmed by the compilation of tiger pictures once the tiger census process is completed across all five ranges of PTR. The divisional forest officer of PTR, Kailash Prakash told TOI that the picture of one cub had been captured by camera traps in Barahi forest range and during the installation of cameras for tiger counting in Mahof range, three cubs were spotted by the field staff. The sighting of four more cubs had been confirmed by the camera installation team in Mala forest range.
The DFO said the final figure of the cubs could be verified when the counting of tigers is concluded probably in the third week of June. He said he was confident about overwhelming presence of cubs in PTR this year but the exact number of cubs would be revealed by the complete collection of pictures of big cats captured by the cameras. He added as the sugarcane crop in the region has been completely harvested, the chances of tigresses straying out of the wild would be remote as there would be no camouflage for it or the cubs in the open fields. He said it was simply hard for the big cats to differentiate between the forest and the fully grown sugarcane field. If there had been matured sugarcane crop in the proximity of forests, the mother cat could have migrated to the cane fields, the DFO added. He told that the PTR had been provided with four rifles of .315 bore, 20 wireless sets and 14 GPS. He said that the department was expected to receive more infrastructure very soon.
As posted in Timesofindia.indiatimes.com