Relocating Tigers: Belling The Big Cat
At Ranthambore Tiger Reserve, he was the monarch of all he surveyed. Today, Tiger T24, popularly known as Ustad, is languishing in solitary confinement at Sajjangarh Biological Park in Udaipur. Ustad attained notoriety after he killed a forest guard on May 8, 2015. Tragically, it was human interference that made Ustad a man-eater.
This is a tale which is repeated in Rajasthan’s three major tiger reserves— Ranthambore, Sariska and Mukundra Hills. They have all seen an increase in cases of poaching and tigers attacking humans which, wildlife experts say, is due to human habitation in the vicinity of the reserves. In 2007, the state government decided to relocate villages which fall within the periphery of the sanctuaries. But till now, not much progress has been made. In March 2019, the Rajasthan High Court even issued notices to the state government and authorities concerned over their failure to relocate 43 villages around Ranthambore Tiger Reserve.
Relocating tigers from tiger-full to tiger-poor reserves might be a good idea, but lots of work and problems need to be covered to get it working.
This article shows some views on the matter.