At a time when the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) is trying to repopulate tiger reserves by translocating big cats, here is some good news. Sugarcane fields in Pilibhit’s Amaria block are home to nearly 10 tigers today – a count that exceeds at least 20 of the country’s 50 tiger reserves.
Located about 18 km from Pilibhit Tiger Reserve (PTR) and 20 km from Surai range of Terai East forest division of Uttarakhand, Amaria’s sugarcane fields offer a perfect refuge for tigresses for breeding. The reasons: A thick cover of tall cane crop, easy availability of food and water and complete protection from other male tigers who mostly prey on tiger cubs to be able to mate with their mothers afresh.
According to PTR officials, the presence of tigers in Amaria was first reported in November 2012 when a tigress with three cubs had strayed from PTR’s Mahof forest range to the catchment area of river Devha near Deuni dam, apparently to protect them from male tigers on the prowl.