ATR - Day 59: Saw Shambhu and Chhoti Madhu separately. Here is a story of Shambhu’s shocking aggressiveness
Despite rains, we saw two tigers — an aggressive male, Shambhu and a female, Chhoti Madhu, who is being constantly pestered by Shambhu in a replay of the Bandhavgarh mating tale.
November 28, 2023
Tuesday, 11:30 PM
Tadoba Jungle Camp,
Near Moharli Gate,
Today morning, we entered Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve through the Adegaon Safari Gate and travelled within the Adegaon Zone, which is a buffer zone of the reserve, and we were not hugely hopeful because it was raining and tigers don’t like to move around under the irksome patter of water from the sky. But to our huge surprise, despite the inclement weather, we did get to see a tiger, and not just one but two, to our greater astonishment.
In addition to sighting, we also witnessed a curious tiger behaviour, which we also noted not so long ago in Madhya Pradesh’s Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve, wherein a male tiger was constantly pursuing a female with annoying persistence, blocking her way and disallowing her to move with the intent to mate with her, which the tigress was just as relentlessly resisting as the male tiger was pressing with it.
We have one such insistent tiger called Shambhu in this area also. He is an aggressive male and we were told that he had severely injured a female tiger called Collarwali because he wanted to mate with her and she did not. He tore into her stomach with deep gashes from his claws though she managed to survive. Her cubs ran away, afraid and distressed by the attack, but they have probably and hopefully reunited.
Today we saw him pursuing and blocking another female tiger called Chhoti Madhu. We were told by the drive and guid that he has also snatched away her kill and is feeding on it deep in the woods even though we ourselves could not see the kill or Shambhu feeding on it, the kill being beyond our line of sight in the woods. But perhaps Chhoti Madhu has already eaten at least a large part of the kill, or so we hope.
However, I did see Chhoti Madhu swimming across a water body and also managed to click a shot of a few fishes jumping around her face as she swims across.
In the evening, we couldn’t take a safari because of bad weather. Besides, the weather forecast of the area indicates that bad weather is going to persist some more, which is one of our worries. Today’s Vlog went live on time. Do watch!