A male tiger reportedly travelled over 100 km to reach Sundarbans forests in Bangladesh completing his four months-long journey from an Indian forest. According to Hindustan Times, the journey of this tiger was tracked by a radio collar attached to his neck in December 2020.The tiger was captured from Harinbhanga forest just opposite the Harikhali camp under Bashirhat range in Bengal and later released with the satellite collar on December 27. Speaking about the tiger’s journey, West Bengal’s chief wildlife warden VK Yadav said that its long and arduous journey to Bangladesh involved many hurdles including some rivers that were wider than a kilometre. However, he defied all odds that came in his way and crossed over 3 islands in the span of four months to complete his journey. In the expedition, the tiger did not venture into areas of human habitation.
After initial movement on the Indian side, he started moving towards Talpatti island in Bangladesh Sundarbans and crossed several rivers including Choto, Harikhali, Boro Harikhali and the Raimangal. There’s also a possibility that the tiger could have initially come from Bangladesh before it was captured for radio-collaring by the foresters in December last year.
The tigers last known location was at Talpatti island in Bangladesh on May 11. Explaining the possible reasons for the tiger going off track, Yadav said that the satellite collar might have slipped from its neck.
He revealed that the collar was enabled with a mortality sensor which would have given indication in case of his death. However, there has not been any such signal and the collar must have slipped off his neck. Additionally, the salinity of the water could have also damaged the radio collars.
This is not the first time that a tiger has crossed over to Bangladesh from India. In fact, it is common for animals to cross country boundaries in the Sundarbans. In January 2017, a satellite collared female tiger had travelled over 100 km to reach the Bay of Bengal’s tip.