Mumbai: SGNP tiger cub Sultan to get a new friend today

Updated: 22 November, 2020 07:34 IST | Ranjeet Jadhav | Mumbai

The team at the national park is bringing home an 11-month-old male tiger from Gorewada Zoo found abandoned earlier this year

The decision to shift the male cub was taken after attempts to locate his mother didn't yield results
The decision to shift the male cub was taken after attempts to locate his mother didn't yield results

The Sanjay Gandhi National Park in Borivli is all set to welcome a new member—a male captive tiger cub from Gorewada Zoo in Nagpur. The cub is expected to reach Mumbai later today or early on Monday morning. The decision to shift the cub from Gorewada Zoo to SGNP was taken after attempts to locate its mother through DNA testing didn't yield any results.

Speaking to mid-day, a forest department official said, "The tiger cub is 11 months old. A team from SGNP left from the zoo on Friday afternoon, along with the cub and a veterinary doctor."

The team that is bringing the tiger will make at least four to five halts during the 800 km-long journey, so that the cub doesn't experience any kind of stress. The vehicle will be travelling at 40-50 kmph. Every four to five hours, the tiger will be given water and food.

The team that is bringing the tiger to the national park
The team that is bringing the tiger to the national park

The tiger was found abandoned in the forest of the Chichpalli range in Chandrapur on April 24. Samples of his hair and scat were collected for DNA testing to help trace its mother. However, attempts to reunite him with his mother failed.

The tiger will be a new addition to the captive tiger and lion safari at SGNP, started in the 1990s. At present, there are a total of four female tigers at SGNP. Of these, three are almost eight to ten years old, while one is an 18-year-old. In December last year, another young tiger, named Sultan—his official name is C1, and he is the cub of Tigress T1 from Brahmapuri Forest Division area—was transferred from the Gorewada Zoo to SGNP. The tiger was brought to SGNP to breed with the four tigresses—Bijlee, 9, Mastani, 9, Basanti, 18, and Laxmi, 10. The breeding programme was expected to begin once Sultan settled down, but according to the sources, there has not been much progress. A source said that the older tigers are very dominant and don't let Sultan come close. A few months ago, SGNP wrote to Gorewada Zoo requesting for one more tiger, and got a green signal recently.

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First Published: 22 November, 2020 07:32 IST

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