A tiger strayed into Kothur in the Srimangala hobli of Virajpet taluk in Kodagu from the Nagarahole National Park and killed eight cows and calves, two goats, and a dog in five days.
Mandanna, Range Forest Officer, Nagarahole Range, told The Hindu that the tiger had killed a calf owned by Mukkatira Harry near Marigudi temple in Kothur, which was the last kill . The forest team tracked the tiger following its pug marks on Wednesday afternoon, but in vain. A carcass was placed in a cage to capture the tiger and the wait was on, Mr. Mandanna, who is camping at Kothur told The Hindu on Thursday.
The animal had killed two cows and four calves belonging to Satish at Kothur on Monday late night and two cows and two goats at the shed of Satish's brother Santosh in the early hours, said the Virajpet Deputy Conservator of Forests, Kantaraj, who had visited the spot. Mr. Santosh had seen the tiger in the shed and upon firing in the air, the animal fled.
Anxious crowd had gathered at Kothur and demanded the Forest Department to pay compensation. Legislative Assembly Speaker K.G. Bopaiah, (who represents Virajpet Assembly constituency) reached the spot on Wednesday to hold talks with the agitated people, including the brothers who had lost the animals.
Senior officials of the Forest Department told Mr. Bopaiah that relief to the extent of Rs. 5,000 for the loss of each cow and Rs. 2,000 for each goat could be paid, but the residents of Kothur demanded more, besides protection to their life and cattle.
Hunsur Wildlife Chief Conservator of Forests and Project Tiger director Hosmath; and Deputy Conservator of Forests Vijayranjan Singh rushed to the spot to take stock of the situation.
Mr. Bopaiah said compensation for a cow should be Rs. 25,000, for a calf Rs. 9,000, and Rs. 5,000 for a goat.
Although the relief amount exceeded the sum prescribed by the State government, additional funds would be drawn from the Tiger Conservation Fund, which was being managed by the Project Tiger Directorate.
Mr. Kantaraj said the tiger could be an aged animal and one of its canines had fallen and another could be half broken after assessing the wound marks on the dead animals. That tiger was not able to eat the carcass fully was an indication that it was old, he said.
The animal had killed one more calf and a dog on its way to the Nagarahole forests on Wednesday morning, Mr. Kantaraj said. The tiger did not return on Wednesday, Mr. Mandanna said.