R'sthan tiger missing; Forest dept to launch search

T-77 has gone missing from Aanwad-Ki-Khad Zone 10 and has not been sighted since.

Four months after male tiger T-77 went missing from  Ranthambore National Park (RNP), the Rajasthan Forest department is all set to launch Phase 4 of monitoring as prescribed by National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA). 

Starting September 15, the 25-day long Phase 4 monitoring drive will be held in RNP. "It's a rigorous exercise in which entire park will be divided into 6-7 grids. There are total of 102 points in the park which will be monitored by 204 cameras. Instead of tracking single animal, this type of monitoring helps to track the density of animals," G V Reddy, Chief Wildlife Warden of Rajasthan told DH. 
 
T-77 has gone missing from Aanwad-Ki-Khad Zone 10 and has not been sighted since. Wildlife conservationists fear it might have fallen prey to poaching. However, the Forest department has ruled out the possibility of poaching and cited monsoon as the reason for the disappearance of T-77. 
 
Monsoon blues
 
"In rainy season, it's not possible to get attendance of each animal everyday. In case of  T-77, it  may have moved to Kuno-Palpur forest area in Madhya Pradesh since it's territory is close to Chambal river," Reddy said. Citing an old example, Reddy said that in the year 2013, an animal from RNP went up to Gwalior. 
 
The Chief Conservator of Forest at RNP told DH, "Animals love to move long distances during monsoon season. They change their territories as the markings are washed away by the rain. Usually, animals recorded in one place are suddenly spotted 100-200 mts away." 
 
Four-year-old tiger T-77 was assigned the number after it turned two years old in 2016. Earlier this year, two sub-adult tigers were found dead in the same zone. They were allegedly poisoned.

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R'sthan tiger missing; Forest dept to launch search

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