Skip to main content

A Cheetah By The Tail

 Cheetah  rescue operations after they stray  away from the  safe confines  of  congested  Kuno national park  have been reported   regularly in India  since  September 2022 when  the  maiden  batch of African cat landed in India  amidst much fanfare. But the latest visuals of yet another such action- this time in  a crowded Rajasthan village in Karauli district-put a question mark again  on the safety of the animal.   This cheetah had to be handled physically in order to prevent it from falling into a ravine as it cornered at the crest of the ravine after darting amid a gathering of an huge crowd nearby. Pawan's Life Was At Risk  Rajasthan forest  department officials alerted Kuno  National Park authorities  about the cheetah leading them to a rescue operation. Pawan, the male cheetah had wandered into Rajasthan through Chambal river bank and was spotted by the local villagers who in turn informed the  local authorities. “Male cheetah Pavan was rescued from Karauli district in Raj

Tiger Boom of Panna: River Project To Lead Reversal of The Trend

 

Panna tiger reserve

As the  threat of Ken Betwa Linking Project (KBLP) continues to stare Panna tiger reserve (PTR) , its tiger numbers  are “going up exponentially” and may touch “100 sooner than predicted”. Not only this, the big cat is covering those parts of the park as well where they were not seen earlier. Though almost all the green permissions for the KBLP are yet to be cleared, the government in Madhya Pradesh has started survey of the villagers to be affected by the proposed project, propagated as a game changer for Bundelkhand region by transferring “surplus water” from Ken River to Betwa to irrigate the drought prone region. Experts have contested the merits of the project and questioned the environmental feasibility.  

Panna's Success Story In This Report 


Panna Tiger Reserve

An interesting tiger study released by the field director of the PTR, Uttam Kumar Sharma,  talks about various aspects of the rise in the population of the big cats in Panna, the geographical regions where the tiger numbers are increasing, the dispersal pattern of the tigers in Panna Landscape and the impact of a highway 39 criss crossing the core area of the park  deterring tigers to cross the road. “Tigers are continuously moving across the boundary of PTR in to the Panna Landscape. There is not only outward movement, it has been observed that tigers which were earlier considered disperse in to landscape have returned back to the PTR”, the study said. Besides the dispersal, the tigers are exploring new areas within PTR boundaries, which were earlier having “no presence of tiger.”  The report gives example of five tigresses P222, P641, P642, P643 and P433-22 seen for the first time.”


They have given birth and rearing cubs in the forest ranges of PTR West of Ken river, in Chhatarpur district”, the report said. Recently, tigress P141-12 with her cubs was also seen in areas west of Ken river in the core area of Chandranagar range. Her movement was earlier reported in areas East of Ken river in the Core area of Madla Range. “Presently, at least 8 adult tigers along with 10 cubs are present in Forest Ranges, West of Ken River within the boundary of PTR”. This number will grow further as lots of habitat improvement work has been done in these areas assessing their potential in becoming good tiger habitats, the report said. But there is bad news attached to this piece of information. The tiger numbers may be going up, they may not last longer as the most of the submergence from KBLP would happen in this area only. The PTR study predicts population of tigers in Panna to be somewhere 84 to 86 by the end of 2022. The number was zero in 2009 before the tiger reintroduction programme was started.The next blog will carry the full report of Panna tiger reserve. 

River Project To Submerge Critical Tiger Habitat

Panna Tiger Reserve

When the tiger reserve is rejoicing the rising numbers of the big cat, the KBLP is all set to reverse the tiger triumph and destroy the most successful tiger reintroduction programme launched in any tiger reserve. The project will lead to  submergence of critical tiger habitat (CTH) Panna Tiger Reserve triggering a major loss of the tiger and its major prey species such as chital and sambar, says a a new study Current Science. “The project may incur an estimated loss of 58.03 square kilometres (10.07 per cent) of critical tiger habitat (CTH) in the reserve”, the report said. There will be an indirect loss of 105.23 sq km of the CTH because of habitat fragmentation and loss of connectivity due to submergence, the study published on December 25, 2021, claimed .  Apart from successful tiger translocation, PTR is rich in prey species such as sambar,  spotted deer neelgai , chinkara and chausingha among others protected under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 and are also listed in Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species(CITES). The National Tiger Conservation Authority or the NTCA and Central Empowered Committee  appointed by the Supreme Court of India have already expressed concerns about the loss of 105 sq. km of the tiger habitat because of submergence and habitat fragmentation. 

As the construction of large dams for the interlinking of rivers to solve the irrigation and drinking water problems created potential threats to the apex predator, herbivores and the overall biodiversity Panna, the Current Science study titled “The inter-linking of rivers and biodiversity conservation: a study of Panna Tiger Reserve, Madhya Pradesh, India” said there are examples within Bundelkhand, on ways to manage the water crisis. This region is spread across the two states of Uttar Pradesh (UP ) and Madhya Pradesh (MP)  where the PTR is located, The total area submerged would be 86.50 sq km, of which 57.21 sq km lies within Panna Tiger Reserve, the study said. This will account for 65.50 per cent of total submergence. The land use land cover and vegetation data shows that tree density and diversity are comparatively higher in the submerged area.The Union Cabinet December 8, 2021, approved the funding and implementation of the Ken-Betwa inter-linking of rivers project at a cost of Rs 44,605 crore.


Though many statutory permissions are required to be  obtained, the government in Madhya Pradesh has started the survey of the proposed submergence areas and notices are served to villagers. Union Information and Broadcasting minister Anurag Thakur  had said the river linking project was deemed a ‘national project’ and the Centre will take care of 90 % of the project’s cost.The remaining 10 per cent cost will be shared by UP and MP. The project spreads across the districts of two states — Jhansi, Banda, Lalitpur and Mahoba districts of UP and Tikamgarh, Panna and Chhatarpur districts of MP —  through a 230-km-long canal.

Banner Pic: Panna Tiger Reserve

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

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

Tiger Corridor : Now Satpuda Melghat National Parks Connectivity At Risk

Much- hyped wildlife friendly NH7 passing   through the famous Kanha -Pench forest corridor and named after the two famous national parks should have 11.81 kms long under passes to let the wildlife have a safe passage. Instead the National Highways Authority of India (NHA) overlooked the rules and constructed only 4.41 km long underpasses compromising their dimensions.  Similarly in NH6, only 2.95 km of mitigation work was done against a schedule 8 kms length. Not everybody knows this truth.  Now NHAI seems to be completely violating the Wildlife (Protection) act 1973 while constructing a road patch on NH46 ( Hoshangabad -Betul). This is a functional tiger corridor connecting Melghat and Satpura tiger reserves. Now the connectivity is also as threatened as the tiger itself.  No Lessons Learnt From NH6 Kanha- Pench Corridor The reduced length of structures in  MH6  and NH7  -connecting East with the West and  North with the South  respectively -for safety of the wildlife could be achiev

A Cheetah By The Tail

 Cheetah  rescue operations after they stray  away from the  safe confines  of  congested  Kuno national park  have been reported   regularly in India  since  September 2022 when  the  maiden  batch of African cat landed in India  amidst much fanfare. But the latest visuals of yet another such action- this time in  a crowded Rajasthan village in Karauli district-put a question mark again  on the safety of the animal.   This cheetah had to be handled physically in order to prevent it from falling into a ravine as it cornered at the crest of the ravine after darting amid a gathering of an huge crowd nearby. Pawan's Life Was At Risk  Rajasthan forest  department officials alerted Kuno  National Park authorities  about the cheetah leading them to a rescue operation. Pawan, the male cheetah had wandered into Rajasthan through Chambal river bank and was spotted by the local villagers who in turn informed the  local authorities. “Male cheetah Pavan was rescued from Karauli district in Raj