Tiger Reinrtoduction in Madhav National Park, Madhya Pradesh
Madhav National Park, one of the oldest National Park of Madhya Pradesh notified in 1956, had sizeable tiger population in the past. Over the years, the national park had sporadic presence of tiger and the last reported tiger presence was in 2012. Spread over an area of 354.61 sq km, the location of the park assumes conservation significance as it has the potential to connect Panna Tiger Reserve of Madhya Pradesh with Ranthambore Tiger Reserve in Rajasthan.
As part of the proposal to re-establish tiger population in Madhav National Park, the Madhya Pradesh Forest Department had prepared a plan for translocating 5 tigers (2 males and 3 females) from Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve and Panna Tiger Reserves and from the surroundings of Bhopal. For housing tigers before reintroduction into the wild, 3 enclosures of 1.3 ha each have been constructed. Each of these enclosures are interconnected through gates and provision for water, shade and natural tree cover has been made. The newly introduced tigers will be monitored round the clock by the field staff. A full time veterinary doctor equipped with rescue vehicle, cages, immobilizing gun, drugs has been deployed at the national park for tiger monitoring.
The two important political leaders of Madhya Pradesh belonging to the ruling BJP, Shri Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh and Shri Jyotiraditya Scindia released two tigers, a 4 year old male from Satpura Tiger Reserve and a three and half year old tigress from Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserves, into the specially created soft release enclosures in Madhav National Park.
Habitat protection and foot patrol to prevent poaching of wild animals is very important to ensure that the prey species of tigers thrive. When the prey species thrive predators arrive and settle down there. It is also important to ensure that the forest officials are taking steps to ensure that their activities are ecologically acceptable. Most of our forests are overrun with exotic weeds like lantana, prosopis juliflora etc and that reduces the native species. This results in reducing the availability of forage for herbivores. When herbivores thrive their predators repopulate the place by moving in from adjoining forests.