Power paraglider, dog squad join T1 tigress searching operation

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 11 Oct 2018 10:01:12


By Ramesh Marulkar,

Strategy changed for combing operation

After experimenting with thermal drone and elephants to trace the elusive T1 tigress in the jungles of Pandharkawda and Ralegaon tehsils during past 28 days, Forest Department has now introduced services of a power paraglider and a squad of two Cane Corso sniffer dogs on Tuesday in an attempt to locate the menacing tigress.

According to sources, the two-seater paraglider, owned by Nawab Shafath Ali Khan, former national sharp-shooter, who is leading the tranqiuilising operation, reached Sakharkheda base camp from Hyderabad on Tuesday. Similarly, the dog squad belonging to Wildlife Tranqui Force of which Nawab is Secretary, reached the site from Hyderabad. Jyoti Randhawa, noted golfer, will lead the dog squad.

Sources pointed out that the power paraglider would be used once location of the beast is understood. The paraglider would undertake aerial survey of water bodies, villages and movements of people nearby and communicate to the tranquilising teams on wireless. If given green signal then the teams would fire the dart at the tigress. This precaution is being taken as it is the tendency of an animal after darting runs towards water to cool itself. The beast may attack if there is movement of people nearby, sources pointed out.

It is reported that the squad of dogs was brought from Gurgaon in Haryana to Hyderabad to allow them smell urine of a tigress from Nehru Zoological Park. The urine was brought in small container outside the park. This makes dogs familiar with the smell of tigress’ urine that will help in detecting this problem tigress.

Moreover, a five-member tracking team has also arrived on Tuesday at the base camp from Hyderabad for providing services in locating the rogue tigress. Finding that the operation has not produced any tangible results to capture the tigress that killed 13 persons, the department has changed its field strategy on Monday.

As many as 200 persons, including veterinary doctors, police sharp-shooters, STPF jawans, field staff mebers, forest labourers and others are enaged in this operation but they could not sight the beast even for once.
Sources said that the top forest officers camping at Pandharkawda held a meeting of all the persons at Sawarkheda base camp to discuss change in the strategy. The meeting decided to withdraw forest labourers providing data on pug-marks, scat, press impression pads and other indirect evidences.

Now, the teams would get pictures of tigress and her two cubs from 90 camera traps installed at stragetic spots latest by 8 am so that they would select
where to go. All the teams would move in the same direction to trap the beast. The department has provided 200 metres of green nets to the teams to cordon off vicinity after coming to know existence of the beast.
Meanwhile, the teams found no indirect evidences such as pug-marks, scat, camera trap pictures of the tigress that is moving along with her two cubs. Sporadic incidents of cattle kills are occurring by the tigress to satisfy hunger.