Himachal Pradesh Celebrates First Tiger Sighting in Simbalbara National Park
Tiger sighting brings hope for conservation efforts in Himachal Pradesh
Himachal Pradesh has been in a celebratory mood since the news of a tiger being spotted in the Simbalbara National Park (SNP) was confirmed. This is the first-ever tiger sighting that has been documented in the park, which is spread over 27 sq. km. and is home to a wide variety of wildlife species, including spotted deer, barking deer, sambhar, nilgai, wild boar, and other mammals.
N. Ravisankar, Divisional Forest Officer, mentioned that the pugmark of the tiger was first spotted close to SNP last month. To confirm its presence, eight camera traps were set up at various locations. One of the camera traps captured the tiger, recording its presence for the first time and bringing cheer to wildlife enthusiasts.
While forest department officials believe that the movement of the feline is between SNP and Kalesar National Park located in Haryana, they are certain that it has come from Uttarakhand’s Rajaji National Park (RNP). As per Ravisankar, the decrease in Yamuna River water flow probably allowed the animal to reach SNP from RNP.
The forest department officials also believe that climate change has led to droughts, floods, and other extreme weather events that have affected the habitats of many animal species. As a result, animals have been forced to move to new areas in search of food and suitable habitats.
The fact that the tiger could reach Himachal Pradesh is significant as it shows the continuity of the Simbalbara-Kalesar-Rajaji national parks, making it important to preserve the route. In the past, these three national parks were well-connected tiger corridors. The Shimla Wildlife Division, which looks after the conservation management of zoos, national parks, and sanctuaries of Shimla, Solan, and Sirmaur districts, released a photo caught on a camera trap on Twitter.
Celebrating the first-ever tiger spotting in the region, the Shimla Wildlife Division tweeted on February 21.
— Shimla Wildlife Division (@dfowlshimla) February 21, 2023
Netizens were quick to express their joy at the news. “Great news King of Jungle is now in Himachal. These are the first-ever camera trap images of Tiger in Himachal from Simbalbara National park. Kudos to the staff of Simbalbara for this success coming from their regular monitoring efforts,” commented one user.
The tiger spotting in Himachal’s national park is being seen as a positive sign, indicating the park’s health and viability as a habitat for diverse wildlife. Since Simbalbara National Park is likely to attract wildlife enthusiasts and tourists to the region, it could provide a boost to the local economy through ecotourism.
Via: Indian Express