Tiger now moves to Bandipur

It had triggered panic at Kolavally in Wayanad

A tiger that triggered panic among local residents at Kolavally in Wayanad on the Kerala-Karnataka border crossed the Kabani river and entered the Bandipur Tiger Reserve (BTR) in Karnataka on Tuesday evening.

The tiger, aged about seven years, had triggered panic over the past one week in the area after it attacked a forest range officer and killed three domestic animals.

“When the animal was located near a deserted house inside a plantation near Seetha Mount around 2.30 p.m., after a search of three days, a team of veterinarians led by A. Ajesh, assistant forest veterinary surgeon, fired the first tranquillizer dart,” D.K. Vinod Kumar, Chief Conservator of Forest (Northern Circle), Kannur, said.

The animal hid inside a bush around 15 minutes after being hit by the dart. When it came out, the team’s attempt to fire the second dose went in vain as the animal charged at the officials, he said.

Binesh, 30, a forest watcher sustained injuries after the tiger attacked him. He was admitted to a hospital at Meppadi with injuries to his right hand.

Unsuitable terrain

“The terrain was not suitable to fire darts and the ferocious nature of the animal prevented us from firing the second dose,” Mr. Vinod Kumar said. “We pursued the big cat five times but it entered the BTR after crossing the Kabani around 6 p.m.,” he added.

“It is suspected that the animal had deep neck injuries after it had got stuck in a wire snare. The snare was intact on its neck and it could have forced the animal to enter human habitations in search of easy prey,” he said.

“We have briefed the Field Director of the BTR and asked him to adopt steps to rescue it,” Mr. Vinod Kumar added.

As many as 20 camera traps were set up on the banks of the river to monitor its movements and a forest team deployed for patrolling, he said.

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