B2 (1997-2011)

B2 (1997-2011)

Monday, 26 December 2011

Buxa roars back, count finds 20 tigers in park

KOLKATA: Buxa Tiger Reserve, a favourite holiday destination for wildlife lovers where tales abound of phantom tiger sightings, may have finally regained its stripes.

A report by the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) has concluded that the North Bengal reserve - which has never had a steady tiger population and hasn't reported a sighting for over a decade - is home to 20 tigers, four of which are female.

"The report was sent to us last week," said S B Mondal, principal chief conservator of forests (wildlife). "The scientists have done a DNA analysis of the scat samples . We always knew there were tigers in the park, but the sightings were low. Now, with the CCMB's report of 20 tigers, we have enough reason to back our claims," he said.

S Shivaji of CCMB confirmed the outcome, but refused to divulge details, saying only the Bengal government was authorized to comment.

A wildlife expert, who didn't want to be quoted, said such DNA studies did not necessarily give the correct information. "There are chances of over estimation and decaying in samples collected," he said. 'Tiger gender ratio not normal'.

Experts are fearing presence of only 'dispersing' tigers - those from other forests -in the park due to a noticeable variation in the sex ratio.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/environment/flora-fauna/Buxa-roars-back-count-finds-20-tigers-in-park/articleshow/11247690.cms

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