Setting a new record, a tiger has walked approximately 3,017 kilometres in search of a suitable mate and territory. Named C1, the two-and-a-half-year-old male had left its home, Tipeshwar Wildlife Sanctuary, Maharashtra, in June last year and has been on an expedition since then.
Fitted with a radio collar as part of a long-term tiger monitoring and dispersal studies, C1 is jointly tracked by the forest department and the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) through GPS satellite tracking and VHF ground tracking.
In its 3,017 km journey so far, the tiger has traversed through hundreds of villages, agricultural fields and habitations in several districts of Maharashtra and Telangana and has been rightly given the nickname 'Walker'.
A very well-behaved tiger
As per Ravikiran, Field Director, Pench Tiger Reserve, C1 never causes any trouble to humans until they indulge in mischievous activities trying to mess with it.
"It's worth noting that C1 has never entered into any conflict with humans except the isolated avoidable incidence occurred when villagers approached very close to the tiger in Hingoli district," said Ravikiran.
C1 was born in Tipeshwar to a female tiger called T1 in late 2016 and has two male siblings - C2 and C3. Its full name is TWLS-T1-C1.
Experts monitoring C1's record-breaking journey opines that tigers covering such long distances, crossing the human-dominated, non-forested landscapes in the pursuit of new territory and mates is much beyond our traditional understanding of animals.
C1 found his territory but quest for love continues
Although it remains on the move most of the time, C1 has established his territory in the Dnyanganga Wildlife Sanctuary in Buldhana and adjoining territorial areas under Jalgaon and Aurangabad divisions.
Officials have revealed that "the tiger is using Dnyanganga as a core habitat and surrounding forest areas as a buffer to exploit the landscape".
Also, through the course of its long journey, C1 has acquired all the necessary skills required to survive and avoid coming in contact with humans.
Well, seems like the tiger is now well prepared to meet the love of its life and we hope that it soon does!