Ranthambhore Round up
It’s been a while since my last post & prompted me to write a round-up on current happenings in the park.
- Finally, T19 was sighted with 3 cubs from new litter around the Bada Gate area in Zone 3. Post months of speculation about her carrying/ having delivered a litter this stands confirmed. With the previous litter becoming independent, she can raise her cubs freely but would need to watch out for the constant presence of male cubs from the previous litter around lakes.
- Not very far off from T19’s territory, T39 is ready to raise her next litter. Recent photographs confirm that she is pregnant & could have given birth by now. With two tigers in the tourism zone with small cubs end of season/ next season looks promising.
- The recent change of guard at the Ranthambhore forest department has bought two Ranthambhore experts to the helm of affairs. Both DCF Core & CF have served in Ranthambhore for a large part of their careers & should be able to manage the affairs better. Wishing them both good luck in their endeavour.
- T16 aka Machli is spending most of her time in zone 5. With the forest department finally pulling the plug on free meals, it would be interesting to see whether she survives this summer. Her current area has cattle in abundance, wishing her graceful survival & peaceful death as and when it comes.
- Sultan the Brat is frequently sighted on fort road & his mother's territory. Looks like for now both the parents have accepted his presence around them. Would be interesting to watch whether this tolerance continues once the new litter is born.
- Zone 6 route realignment has made it popular like zones 1-5. Now zone 6 vehicles cover areas like Gaandra & Guda guard posts thereby increasing sighting probabilities. As a result of this, even this zone is sold out most of the time. Do not hesitate to book this one if you are unable to book 1-5 zones.
- T61- female cub of T8 has finally settled in zone 8 aka Balas. There are rumours of a male cub of T26 who had settled in Guda earlier moving to Balas, no photo evidence to confirm the claim though. If the duo stays together, the tribe may increase further. I personally like Balas as an area, reminds me of Savannah grassland. Better water management is needed, water availability would mean a better prey base and thus more food for predators.
- Cubs of T17 have finally settled in the tourism zone after spending their childhood on the periphery. They are regularly sighted in Zone 5 by tourists.
- A new initiative by the forest department called route completion certificate is a welcome step towards a better safari experience for tourists. It means that each vehicle is required to get sign-off from a designated guard post on that route thereby ensuring that vehicles cover the required area & do not turn halfway. The designated guard posts are Anatpura for Zone 5, Lakkad Da for Zone 4, Guda for Zone 2 & 6, and Sultanpur for Zone 1.