No male tiger has been found in Panna Tiger Reserve, a special probe team of the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has said, casting a shadow on efforts to revive tiger population in the sanctuary where two tigresses were translocated in March.
"There was a male tiger in the reserve in January but as of now there is no male big cat left there," scientist Qamar Quershi, who was part of a three-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) that camped in the Panna reserve for two days, told a news agency today.
He said the team, headed by NTCA's former Director P K Sen, will be investigating into the reasons for the disappearance of the male tigers in the sanctuary.
The SIT team had come to review the situation in the wake of reports that the reserve's lone tiger has not been located since January and will submit its formal report to the Centre by June.
State Principal Chief Conservator of Forest H S Pabla, however, downplayed the SIT's finding saying there is "nothing new" in it and that they have already sent a proposal seeking permission from the Centre for translocation of the male big cat some time back.
Already two tigresses have been translocated in the reserve to revive the big cat population in the first fortnight of March, he said.
Rajesh Gopal, NTCA member secretary, said that there is a male tiger in the periphery of the reserve and they were hopeful that it will enter the protected area.
Pabla too said that some evidence of the tiger movement do frequently come to light in the area close to the reserve but not inside it.
"We don't want to take chances and want to translocate one tiger in the reserve," he said.
Two years back, the reserve, spread in the are of 540 sq kms in the districts of Panna and Chhatarpur in eastern MP, had 15 TO 30 tigers, according to a Wildlife Institute of India (WII) report.
Courtesy: Zee News.