Rules shot down to kill Kerala Tiger

Published on: 10 Dec, 2012
Published under: General Kerala News, Wayanad District News

9 December 2012
New Delhi

Wildlife experts have concluded that the tiger shot dead in Wayanad district of Kerala on Sunday by forest officials, under pressure from a frenzied mob, had been captured as a cattle-lifter less than a month ago but released back into the wild the same day.

“The tiger was at least 10 years old. Given its advanced age, emaciated condition and serious injuries, it should have been either held in captivity permanently or euthanized professionally. Releasing it posed a risk to itself, to other tigers that it could try to evict, and potentially to humans and livestock,” said K Ullas Karanth, director for science (Asia), WCS.

By matching recent pictures of the predator with its extensive database of camera-trap images taken over two decades, WCS has positively identified the tiger as NHT-243. It said the tiger was first photo-captured in Nagarahole National Park (Karnataka) on February 15, 2005. It appeared to be at least two years old then, which means its age at death was 10 years or above. “NHT-243 was an unusual individual. It appeared to have relatively small genetalia and its total length of 246 cm was rather short for an adult male tiger of its age. It is likely this animal was unable to compete and establish a territory in Nagarahole around 2005-2007 and became a transient,” a WCS note stated.


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