ANGUL: Mahabir may be dead, but it seems the legacy of the tiger from Madhya Pradesh is here to stay.
A 10-year-old resident tigress in Satkosia Tiger Reserve has reportedly conceived after mating with Mahabir. Expecting birth of cubs, authorities of STR have taken precautionary measures in the core areas, where the tigress is reportedly staying, to prevent any untoward incident.
The authorities, however, denied the tigress giving birth in the forest as of now. “We have no information about the tigress delivering any cubs in the core areas. She might have mated with Mahabir. We have taken all precautions for the protection of the tigress,” said Field Director Sudarshan panda.Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) of Satkosia Rama Samy also said he had no knowledge of the tigress giving birth in the forest.
Mahabir was relocated from Kanha Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh to Odisha under India’s first ever inter-State tiger relocation in June last year. After its release into the wild, the tiger went deep into the forest and acclimatised well with his new territory. Since Mahabir was staying in the core areas, it is believed that he mated with the resident tigress and impregnated her, sources said.
Sources said the authorities have put in place tight protection measures and deployed adequate manpower in core areas to track the tigress.The pregnancy of the tigress has raised hopes for Satkosia which is facing a sharp decline in the big cat population. The region was home to 11 tigers in 2010. However, all but one have died under suspicious circumstances.
Mahabir, which was brought to revive the tiger population in the State, was found dead in November following a a maggot-infested wound on its neck. The NTCA opined that Mahabir carried the injury after being trapped in a snare set up for wild pigs in the area.
Satkosia DFO Samy, who is also the investigating officer in Mahabir’s death case, is yet to submit report to the Field Director .“It will take some more time to submit the investigating report to the authorities,” Samy said.