Officers search Tadoba on foot to curb snares

Updated: Apr 15, 2019, 11:19 IST | Ranjeet Jadhav

The decision comes after another tiger became victim of the deadly trap on Saturday; conservationists rue deaths

Officers search Tadoba on foot to curb snares

The forest department has intensified foot patrolling in the core forest area of the Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve (TATR) following the death of a tiger by getting trapped in a wire snare here on Saturday. Members of a special tiger protection force are carrying out combing operation inside the core forest and around water holes to remove snares. The dead body of a sub-adult tiger trapped in a metal wire snare was found near the Khatoda gate of TATR.

Two primary reasons of tiger deaths/injuries are laying snares for meat, and electrocution of farm fence practised by farmers to avoid crop depredation, wildlife experts believe. Conservation photographer and founder member of Group Conservation Lenses and Wildlife (CLAW) Sarosh Lodhi said, "A nursing mother tigress was injured in Kolsa range of Tadoba last week owing to a snare. The snare nuisance is growing and the worrying part is both these incidents are from the core zone. One can only imagine what must be happening in the buffer and territorial forests. The department needs to pull up its socks and get down to curbing this practice by prompt actions and punishments. We only hear cases involving big cats; there must be hundreds of herbivores becoming victims too." A tigress in the Tipeshwar wildlife sanctuary roamed with the snare for almost two years and finally succumbed last month, he added.

Sanjeev Siva, who has been extensively photographing tigers in Central India, added that he had heard of the body of a tiger being found a few hundred metres away from the forest protection hut and yet no one heard the animal growling in pain after it might have got trapped. "TATR is the highest revenue generating parks from Maharashtra but tigers are hardly safe here," he said. On March 30 too, a tourist on a safari inside TATR had spotted a tiger with an injury around its neck and informed the department about it. But the officials haven't found the tiger yet.

Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (APCCF) Wildlife Sunil Limaye told mid-day that an investigation into the case was going on. "We have intensified patrolling in the core as well as buffer zones of the forest through our Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF)," he said, adding that STPF teams will now be deployed in smaller groups at protection huts inside the core area.

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