Young tiger traverses record distance of 1,300 km, across 7 districts and 2 wildlife sanctuaries in just five months

The tiger travelled across 7 different districts in Maharashtra before going to Telangana and re-entering the state.


A young male tiger has reportedly taken an extra-long jaunt through the states of Maharashtra and Telangana, covering a total distance of roughly 1,300 km in just five months. He began his trek from his birthplace, the Tipeshwar wildlife sanctuary in Yavatmal district, Maharashtra, and ended up in the Dnyanganga Wildlife Sanctuary in Buldhana district of Maharashtra.

The male tiger, named 'C1', was born in late 2016, now close to three years old. His mother is a female tiger (T1) in the Tipeshwar sanctuary, and C1 has a brother as well.

 Young tiger traverses record distance of 1,300 km, across 7 districts and 2 wildlife sanctuaries in just five months

Researchers collecting tiger scat samples to take back to the lab for extraction of the stress hormones. Image credit: G. Umapathy.

According to an article in BBC, Bilal Habib, senior biologist with the Wildlife Institute of India, said that this is the longest walk ever taken by a tiger in India and they know this because the animal was radio-collared.

"It's clear that with shrinking space, we need to redraft policy to ensure safety of tigers like C1. A tiger needs three things to become stable at any place - space, food and mate. Dnyanganga has space and enough prey base, though if (C1) doesn't find a mate, it might keep walking further," Habib said.

C1 was radio-collared in February as part of a project called “Studying Dispersal Pattern of Tigers in the Eastern Vidarbha Landscape of Maharashtra” that is headed by Habib.

A map that shows the journey of the tiger. Image credit: Twitter

A map that shows the journey of the tiger. Image credit: Twitter

The tiger began his walk towards the end of June this year, and travelled through seven different districts in Maharashtra before going to Telangana and re-entering Maharashtra.

According to an Indian Express article, throughout his journey, C1 had one encounter with human beings but it was accidental. Ravikiran Govekar director of Pench Tiger Reserve Field and supervisor to Tipeshwar said, “There, it was involved in a conflict with humans, when he attacked a group of men, injuring one. That was the only instance of conflict in his journey.”

According to wildlife officials that spoke to BBC, the tiger may have to be captured and relocated as a precautionary to "avoid any untoward accidents".

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