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Huge Milestone For Conservation: Two translocated tigresses give birth to cubs

By 4th June 2024Blog

In the span of just one week, camera traps have witnessed two translocated tigresses in Rajaji Tiger Reserve give birth to cubs, marking a significant milestone in conservation efforts.

The Rajaji and Corbett Tiger Reserves. Downloaded from Badola et al (2021)

The Rajaji and Corbett Tiger Reserves, Uttarakhand, India. Downloaded from Badola et al (2021)

Uttarakhand

Nestled in the northern part of India, Uttarakhand shares borders with Tibet (China) to the north, Nepal to the east, and the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh to the west and Uttar Pradesh to the south. The state is predominantly mountainous, featuring the stunning Himalayan range. Despite being a small mountain state, Uttarakhand hosts 560 tigers, the third highest number in India. Uttarakhand has two tiger reserves, Corbett Tiger Reserve and Rajaji Tiger Reserve which are adjacent to oneanother.

Rajaji Tiger Reserve

Rajaji TR, established in 2015, is home to approximately 37 tigers, but its carrying capacity is estimated to be up to 83. While Eastern Rajaji has a thriving population of over 50 tigers, the Western part was left devoid of tigers until the recent construction of a flyover reconnected the two sides.

The Corbett Tiger Reserve

Established in 1936, Corbett National Park & Tiger Reserve in Uttarakhand, India, is mainland Asia’s first national park. It is also home to 260 tigers as per the National Tiger Estimation Report-2022, the highest density of wild tigers not only in India, but also globally.

Tiger Translocations

To boost the tiger population in Western Rajaji, four tigers (three females and one male) have been translocated from Corbett since 2020, with another male expected soon. In the past week, camera trap images have revealed that one of the tigresses has been seen with four cubs, while another has been spotted with one cub. This is a tremendous success story for the state and tiger conservation in general.

The conservation significance of this event is enormous. Rajaji Tiger Reserve represents the north-westernmost distribution of wild tigers and could potentially lead to tiger populations reestablishing themselves as far as Simbhalwara Sanctuary in Himachal Pradesh and Kalesar Sanctuary in Haryana. Not too long ago, a tiger crossed from Eastern Rajaji across the Ganga into Western Rajaji and beyond into Kalesar, then onward into Himachal Pradesh.

We congratulate the field teams for the success of their efforts, carried out quietly and patiently. This achievement is a testament to their dedication and the effectiveness of tiger conservation strategies.

Representative image of a tiger cubs. @brand456221007

Representative image of a tiger cub. @brand456221007

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