The tiger which recently strayed into Nilwai forest in Adilabad district was finally caught on the wildlife camera, which has given wildlife conservationists good enough reason to feel jubilant. The latter say this development is important as it will help chalk out plans for the protection of the great cat culminating in the development of the adjacent Kawal Tiger Reserve (KTR) as a prime tiger habitat.

About a dozen wildlife cameras were set up in the Nilwai forest from where reports of cattle being killed kept emerging since the last couple of months. Finally, the image of this lone tiger was caught on one of the cameras between Baddampally and Nakkalapally villages, according to Jannaram Wildlife Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), G. Rama Krishna Rao, who is involved in monitoring the movement of the tiger.

“In addition to physical protection, we are in the process of creating food and water resources for the animal in Nilwai forest keeping in view the summer season. We have deployed additional manpower and created awareness through wall posters in the villages in the area about the need for protecting the tiger and punishment for poaching,” reveals B. Prabhakar, Mancherial DFO of some of the measures initiated so far to save the tiger.

As many as 15 persons including research assistants Yellam from KTR and Bharat from the Hyderabad Tiger Conservation Society (HyTICOS), an NGO involved in conservation in (KTR), are involved in the protection of the great cat. Their efforts are concentrated on curbing poaching which has led to the removal of electrified fencing around agriculture fields and curbing of poisoning of cattle carcasses in the area.

“The best method to protect the tiger, however, will be to radio collar it, which will enable regular monitoring of its movements,” says Imran Siddqui of the HyTICOS. An easy option would be to extend permission given to radio collar straying tigers from the Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve in Chandrapur in Maharashtra to this animal,” he adds.