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Image via Hindustan Times

Tigress ST-9 was relocated from Ranthambore national park to Sariska tiger reserve in 2013. Now, she has given birth to her first cub in Sariska, raising the number of tigers in the reserve to 14 and triggering hope that the park is back on conservation track.

The first indication of the new cub came when forest guard Bhawani Shankar Joshi in Sariska’s Indauka forest area spotted pug marks of a cub along with those of the tigress one morning in the month of May. Another guard found cub pug marks in Bandipul forest area of the same reserve.

Finally, a camera trap was able to capture the image of the cub walking behind its tiger mom which confirmed that the reserve had been indeed blessed with a newborn.

The camera trap image reveals that the cub must be around 6 months now.

“The tigress was relocated to Sariska in January 2013 and she moved in Bandipul, Indauk, Duharmala, Rekamala, Sarunda, Nangalhedi, Berawas and Talvrikshya forest areas,” a statement from the office of Sariska Tiger Reserve (STR) field director RS Shekhawat said.

Reintroduction History

In 2005, Sariska tiger reserve sadly became the first protected sanctuary that lost all its tigers to poaching in India. In 2008 tiger reintroduction plan began here when 7 tigers from Ranthambore were brought here. Gradually the reserve population increased when the tigresses relocated here began giving birth. Tigress ST 2 littered two cubs, both females, in 2012. Both of them are now adults. In 2014, ST 2 gave birth to a male and a female cub. The same year another tigress ST 10 littered two cubs – a male and a female.

The forest officials have increased the security in the area where the cub was sighted and have also installed more come cameras. The authorities have also dug four more water holes to ensure the tigress does not have to wander in search of water.

Status Of Tigers In India

India hosts the largest population of wild tigers in the world with 2226 tigers living here as per the last census conducted in 2014. This year the government has announced that tiger numbers have increased with an estimated 2500 living in the country. Still, the wild cats are endangered and need protection against poaching, habitat loss and habitat fragmentation.

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About Atula Gupta

Atula Gupta is the Founder and Editor of indiasendangered.com. Her work has appeared in a number of international websites, dailies and magazines including The Wire, Deccan Herald, New Indian Express, Down to Earth and Heritage India on issues related to environment and its conservation. She is also the author of Environment Science Essentials, a set of books for school children. She hopes this website provides a platform for people to be aware about species in the verge of extinction and heighten their conservation efforts.

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