On Monday morning Four healthy tiger cubs were found in a house at Gummadapuram village in Nandyala district and the forest department officials took them into their custody after receiving information. The tigress is roaring and roaming within a radius of 2 km around the area coming under Kothapalli Mandal in Nandyala district, a forest official informed ANI.
The animal trackers managed to quickly go to the spot on discovering the cubs and cordoned off the area. The forest department has laid a good number of camera traps. The cubs are quite healthy and aged about three to four months, according to officials.
The officials are trying to reach out to the tigress in the next 24 or 48 hours. In the event, the mother takes the cubs back, it will be a good ending, otherwise the next call would be how to take the situation forward, Shanti Priya Pandey, Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Wildlife (APCCF, WL) told ANI.
"How the cubs reached there is still a bit of an enigma for us. I think the tigress could have been chased by a pack of wild dogs. In a hurry it could have left the cubs," Pandey said.
"Do we rear them for some time and then take them to the zoo or have an in-situ kind of enclosure? That requires a lot of permissions from the NTCA. The protocol says that we need to form a committee, which is headed by the nominee of the chief wildlife warden, the NTCA nominee, the local field director..," she said, indicating that it is too early to give a definitive conclusion.
However, Pandey said the forest officials are taking precautions to ensure that they don't leave a human imprint on the quartet, erasing the original wild imprint as the mother may sometimes reject.
The officials are following the protocol laid down by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) in handling orphaned or abandoned cubs.
According to the officer, the chances of survival are better for the cubs if they successfully return to the wild than staying in non-wilderness settings. Though the department is assessing options on how to return the cubs, Pandey said the behaviour of the mother is crucial.
With agency inputs
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