30 Dec 2007

Tiger Jam

Jemi and I visited Ranthambore, in Rajastan. India in mid-December. I last visited there nearly twenty years ago. It goes without saying that, in a fast-changing country like India, things had changed a lot. There are now many hotels built to cater for "Tiger Tourism", and 90% of the visitors are domestic tourists. So money is being made from wildlife and Indians are taking time to appreciate their natural heritage, which has got to be positive news.

However, you'll find you are sharing the reserve with a lot more people than used to be the case. They now divide Ranthambore into five circuits (Max. 8 vehicles each). When a Tiger is spotted just outside the reserve at dusk as people are leaving, as happened when we were there, everyone positions themselves along the road, hoping to be in the best viewing spot when the Tiger crosses the road.

The convoy home after the Tiger finally appeared....

And what was all the fuss about ?

1 comment:

  1. This looks terrible. I spent 7 days at Kanha about 10 years ago and then went on to Bharatpur instead of Ranthanbore. We had good sightings of tiger most days, either from elephant or jeep. Worst problem was the smell of fuel, coming from the driver not the vehicle! I had heard that poaching at Ranthanbore was now so bad that tigers are hard to see but this seems to be the result - mass gatherings around one animal. How long will it tolerate that level of intrusion I wonder. Perhaps we should offer to support species conservation by reintroducing tigers to Hong Kong (starting with Central). I'm only joking, officer.