BHOPAL: In a tragic development, which is bound to send shock waves among wildlife lovers, the legendary tigress T-15 aka Collarwali aka Mataram, the super mom of 29 cubs, died possibly due to old age related problems at the Pench Tiger Reserve of Madhya Pradesh on Saturday evening.
According to the state forest department sources, the more than 16 years old tigress, which was ill since the last two days, was last spotted by tourists on January 14 lying on the ground in Sitaghat area. Since then she was under round the clock observation of veterinary experts, but despite all efforts, she died at around 6.30 pm on Saturday. The legendary tigress’s death was confirmed officially on Sunday.
Grieving the death of the legendary tigress, the MP home minister Narottam Mishra tweeted on Sunday, “Last salute to Super Mom. Any talk on the prized Tiger State status of Madhya Pradesh will be incomplete without the mention of the important contribution of the Super Mom who gave birth to 29 cubs.”
Considered one of the prime attractions of Pench Tiger Reserve, Collarwali (T-15) was born to T-7 aka Badimada in 2005. It had given birth to 29 cubs (eight litters) since 2006-07, including a record five cubs in 2010.
The popular tigress which was fitted with the radio collar by experts from Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun in March 2008 was a prime attraction in the 2010 BBC Earth documentary ‘Tiger-Spy in The Jungle.’
In 2008, when Panna Tiger Reserve in MP only became tiger-less, it was one of the female cubs of Collarwali only, which was sent to Panna for reviving the big cat’s population there.
According to state forest department sources in MP, “surviving for over 16 years is rare for a tigress. Earlier, Link-7 and Chuhuri also survived as many years in the Kanha National Park.