Skip to main content

Egyptian Vultures: Victims of Myths And Misconception

In one of the most shocking cases of wildlife trade, seven endangered Egyptian vultures (Neophron percnopterus), have been recovered from a man traveling from Kanpur to Manmad in Maharashtra. Wrapped in colourful cloth, the vultures were hidden inside a basket in Pushpak Express when the railway police rounded up the man with the threatened birds. The arrest is likely to unearth a wildlife crime syndicate. This blog will keep you updated on the issue . The scavenger birds are listed as endangered in the IUCN red list  threatened species because of its “rapidly declining"  population world over”. Myths Linked With Vultures Special task force (SIT) of Madhya Pradesh forest department is quizzing Fareed Sheikh (60) who was found in possession of 7 birds from a train at Khandwa railway station. He turned out to be only a   carrier-  like those  in drug trafficking. Fareed said that  Sameer Khan, a resident of  Kanpur, handed him over the vultures and  he was  asked to transfer the co

Bhopal Tigers Do Have the Same Fundamental Right to A home As Do We

The dispersing tigers  of  Bhopal  seem to be watching helplessly as their  habitat grows smaller, food getting scarcer while a smarter set of predators, the land sharks, increasingly devour their habitat. As you read this, prowling somewhere in the fast-dwindling forests of Kaliasot- Kathotia-Kerwa , on the city outskirts, are 18  magnificent tigers, whose future hangs on the pen tips of Bhopal’s babudom.

 Pending Tiger Issues


Many times, some of these dispersing tigers have left the balding jungle cover and strayed into the National Judicial Academy at  Bhadbhada , as if knocking its doors for justice

 Two tiger issues have been pending for long.  After the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA)   accorded a status of tiger reserve to Ratapani sanctuary, the source population of Bhopal tigers, in 2013, the state government needs to issue a notification.  The matter has been pending for the past 7 years. In fact, Ratapani was first recommended as a tiger reserve 17 years ago by the then Principal chief Conservator of Forest  AP Dwivedi in 2013.

Besides, a file to declare Kaliasot- Kathotia-Kerwa tract a conservation reserve   has been gathering dust for the past 10 years.

The latest in the series is a wonderful recommendation. The regional office of the ministry of environment and forest and climate change in Bhopal reportedly recommended saving tiger habitat    near Bhopal. It also said “mapping, notifying and handing over “all the remaining deemed forest areas to the state forest department for administration. The National Green Tribunal (NGT) directed the forest department to go ahead with these recommendations.

Now the ball is in the court of the state government. In the times of climate change and global warming, the Madhya Pradesh government needs to show a strong political will to follow the directives of the centre to save these green lungs.

In the latest tiger census, there are 45 tigers counted in Ratapai sanctuary, the source population of the dispersing tigers of Bhopal. which is more than  in many national parks including Panna tiger reserve and  Sanjay national park Sidhi.  As the number of tigers in Ratapani is more than its carrying capacity and the prey –predator ratio is skewed, the tigers are dispersing.

If the beautiful jungle is upgraded as a tiger reserve,  its forest area   will be increased by  the inclusion of the adjacent Singhora sanctuary as a buffer zone. Herbivore like spotted deer would be translocated from Pench national park- a proposal already long pending- and the last but very important, more funds  will be available for the conservation  works. But the tiger -reserve tag will come along with more restrictions and , perhaps, no government would like them in  the times of populist political measures which undermine  forest and environment issues. Several activities around the  jungles  including  industries and land ownerships are believed to be the reasons behind  the hurdles why  the decision is delayed, and perhaps, may not be taken. But the wildlife lovers are disheartened.

The Wildlife Corridor

The tigers from Ratapani travel a few hundred kms from a  traditional forest corridor, fast shrinking. As the big cats move out from Ratapani, they cross Bhopal- actually a mid -way treat for them where food, shelter and water is available- they further  walk down  to Sehore, Kheoni Sanctuary in Dewas and  beyond to   the proposed Omkareshwar national park ,Choral and Shajapur forests of Western Madhya Pradesh.

The  NTCA  has set up an electronic surveillance system worth about Rs 5 crore    in Mendora village of Bhopal .There are 4 towers  each of them 50 meter high in a 20 km area . They are fitted with high resolution night - vision devices and cameras. However, in monsoon, it is difficult to keep a vigil because of a bigger forest crown.

All the statistics related to the tiger is collected every day and analysed to understand the territory and spots where the predator hunts. This also helps in giving compensation to the villagers for their cattle loss as there are 23  gaushalas around the jungle and the cattle from these cow shelters left in open for grazing in the jungle attract tigers.

The Tiger Territory

All of the tigers moving around Bhopal are identified with the help of their pictures  from the cameras fitted in the jungles. Geo mapping of the tiger territory has also been done with the help of Google map. Their movement is monitored on a day to day basis to track change in their territory.

“If we go into their genealogy, these tigers belong to the family of tigers T1 (male) and T2 (female) who originally belong to the neighbouring Ratapani sanctuary”, said a  senior IFS officer

The forest department has also took -up   a work to erect 5-meter high fencing in about 8 km length from Mendora to Bairagarh Chichli to ensure that the tiger doesn’t appear on the road.

The issue has come to fore as there  are whispers  again in the corridors of power that the government may change the land use of the Kerwa forests in the   long delayed Master Plan .     The protection of  the forest patch of  Kerwan –Kaliayasot  also known as Chandanpura is also  necessary  after the 2005 trend of change in land use in Bhopal when the land use of almost 1000 hectare green belt, botanical garden, city parks agriculture land and the land used for recreation purpose was changed to residential and PSP ( public and semi-public) purpose among others. The city master plan 2021 has been pending for very long  and  the  forest patch is perhaps  a major reason behind the inordinate delay.


  1. 45+ tigers! That's enough to grab the attention of wildlife lovers in particular. As the blog suggest that it is the source population of the dispersing tigers in bhopal, the authorities and general public needs to be more vigilant regarding these big cats. It's an opportunity for the Bhopalis to show their sensitivity toward wildlife. Populist or non populist politics, the ball is now bouncing in people's court...dont just like n forward messages n dont just show ur anger n make then take necessary actions. Let's take a pledge to provide the wildlife with their share of privacy.
    Nature is a fine mom provided she is treated well.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Clouded Leopards Kiss Clouds Atop Nagaland Peak

  Photographic evidence of elusive clouded leopard ((Neofelis nebulosa) has been recorded at an elevation of 3,700 meters  not in a wildlife sanctuary but in a community-owned forest along the India-Myanmar border in the north eastern state of Nagaland.  This rare species of leopard is listed as 'vulnerable' under the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and its population is unknown in the wild. A team of researchers gathered evidence of four leopards- two adults and two cubs. Found on the Highest Peak of Nagaland  The findings have been published in the winter 2021 issue of Cat News, the IUCN/Species Survival Commission (SSC) Cat Specialist Group’s biannual newsletter. The state animal of Meghalaya, the clouded leopard is a medium-sized felid (a mammal of the cat family), and is the smallest of the large wild cats. These leopards  are largely known to inhabit low-elevation evergreen rainforests and are spread from the Himalayan foothills in Nepal, Bhutan and India to Myanmar,

Tigress Abandons Two Cubs Near Bandhavgarh National Park

  A tigress abandoned her two cubs in a farm field  of a small village of Katni district .After waiting for their mothers for about a week,  the forest departent  transferred the cubs-about two and half months old- to  White tiger Safari, Mukundpur in Rewa. The big cat seems to have dispersed from  Bandhavgarh national park , about 65 kms away from Jhiriya village of Katni where the cubs were located. Katni is strategically located between Bandhavgarh and Panna tiger reserves. Wildlife experts fear for the life of both -the tigress and her cubs. Tigress , Cubs Unsafe    The tigress was spotted by some villagers on December 12 night in Jhiriya village. She was accompanying her three cubs. But in the morning, the two cubs were found in a farm but the tigress was missing with the third cub. When villagers first spotted the cubs, they were shivering in cold in the absence of the warmth of their mother.  A senior forest department official said that after the tigress dispersed from some n

Fertility Stories Immortalise Collarwali Tigress of Pench Tiger Reserve

  She was a superstar of Pench tiger reserve . The tigress that livedmore than 16 years and delivered a record number of 29  cubs in8 litters died on January 15 evening. Collarwali, as she was fondly referred toafter a radio collar was put around her neck in 2008, was darling of wildlifetourists who would visit the tiger reserve. They would remember the tigress forher ‘catwalks’ on the pathways of the national park giving them ample opportunitiesto click pictures. She would make easy wildlife photography. Collarwali was immortalizedafter scores of national and international documentaries were made on her. The Departmentof Post in India issued a special cover envelope of Collarwali  on World Sparrow Day in 2015 Besides, NewZealand and Canada too issued personalized stamps on the tigress in the sameyear. The park director said she died because of old age complicationsin her intestine.  Apall of gloom descended over Pench while her funeral was performed on January 16. RIP Collarwali Offic