Loss of canine teeth, fractured leg forced Wayanad tiger to attack cattle

The tiger was caught in the cage trap on Sunday night. Photo: Manorama

Kalpetta: The 10-year-old tiger caught in a trap set by the Forest Department in Wayanad on Sunday, is under the intensive care of veterinarians.

The tiger named ‘Tholppetty 17’ that killed four cows in the Kenichira region of the district is weak as it could not feed for the last few days. According to sources, the animal could not carry its prey due to physical ailments.

“With a fractured front leg and three canine teeth lost, it was tough for the animal to hunt in the wild, forcing it to migrate to the forest fringes and hunt the domestic animals,” B Ranjith, Divisional Forest Officer-in-charge, South Wayanad, told Onmanorama.

Ranjith said the tiger would be kept under observation at the forest station for a few days and further treatment would begin once its health improves. “At present, the animal is unfit for transfer to better habitats,” he said. Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Thiruvananthapuram is a likely destination once the tiger becomes healthy. At present “there is no question of releasing it back to the jungle as the tiger is incapacitated for the wild”.

Ajith K Raman appointed DFO
Meanwhile, amid mounting pressure from the public and people’s representatives across political barriers to appoint a full-time Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) to head the South Wayanad Forest Division, the Department of Forest and Wildlife appointed Ajith K Raman as the new DFO. He took charge Monday afternoon.

Forest Minister A K Saseendran had assured the people's representatives of the district, amid recurring wildlife attacks, that a full-time DFO would be appointed soon.

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