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Highlights from our 2017 Tiger-watching holidays:


Tiger, Dave Brotton

Tiger, Dave Brotton

In this article we’re delighted to report on last year’s successful Tiger tours to India’s iconic and lesser known national parks including Tadoba, Kanha, Bandhavgarh, Panna, Satpura and Ranthambore, and we’re now looking ahead to the 2017/18 season!

Here are a few special highlights from our 2017 Tiger-watching holidays:
 
India – Tiger Direct! tour, February 2017
In the Sijhora grassland area of Kanha National Park grassland our group’s hopes were high of seeing a Tiger, and they were in luck! As they reached Sulkhum bridge, they saw a Tigress known as ‘Mundidadar’ standing in front of them on the bridge – a thrilling sight! She stood there for some time, looking down towards the stream then at last gave a faint call. One by one four of her 2-year-old cubs came out from under the bridge and crossed the stream, hopping on the rocks in the water, and went to join their mother, nuzzling and rubbing against the Tigress by way of a greeting. Our group had ample opportunity to take photos and record videos of the family encounter. After staying for a couple of minutes on the bank of the stream, the Tiger family all disappeared into the bamboo thicket. Later, we learnt that they had a Sambar stag kill stashed in the undergrowth. A wonderful sighting!
 
India – Tiger Marathon tour, March 2017
Our group’s final game-drive at Ranthambhore National Park proved arguably the best of the trip. While still en route to the ‘safari zone’, on the main road into the reserve, they came across the once-in-a-lifetime sight of a Leopard in the act of making a kill. A large Spotted Deer stag with a full set of antlers was crashing about in the bushes less than 50 feet from the road. When our group stopped to investigate, they discovered a Leopard clutching hard to the stag’s throat and they witnessed the Leopard make its kill and drag the unfortunate deer into cover.
 
After that special encounter, they then came across a Tigress with three cubs of about 6 months old – they were all lying under cover and busy finishing off a kill. After staying to observe the Tigers for a bit, they then began to drive out of the reserve when they came across a Tiger and Tigress resting neck-deep in water in a lake. One couldn’t ask for a better finale!
 
India – Tiger Direct! tour, March 2017
On the pre-tour extension to our ‘India – Tiger Direct!’ holiday in March, which goes to Tadoba National Park, our group had fantastic sightings – 5 different Tigers including sub-adults, and a good number of birds. The highlight, though, was our group’s first game-drive on which they saw a family of Tigers in a meadow at Jammuni water body – a Tigress known as ‘Choti Tara’ with her two sub-adult cubs which were playing together. Our group watched, entranced, as one of the cubs climbed up a slanting tree trunk. The cubs tried to interest their mother in play; she was tolerant of their activities, but remained lying down. A little while later their father approached the family. The cubs greeted him and started to play with him. It was a fantastic sighting!

Sloth Bear, Duncan Stephen

Sloth Bear, Duncan Stephen

India – Tiger Direct! tour, April 2017
This tour enjoyed numerous Tiger sightings in Tadoba, Pench and Kanha National Parks as well as good sightings of Leopard, Sloth Bear and many other mammals. One of the highlights was a game-drive on which our group saw 4 individual Tigers and 3 Sloth Bears …
 
On 1st April, our group drove to Pandarpauni waterhole as Tiger tracks had been seen there the previous night. As they approached, they heard a few distress calls and, after waiting an hour, they were rewarded by the sight of a pair of courting Tigers emerging from bamboo thickets and walking towards the waterhole. The female sat down near the waterhole with the male close by. Next our group drove towards Tadoba Lake and had excellent views of a Serpent Eagle sitting very close to the road on a dead branch, as well as a sighting of two Wild Dogs.
 
That afternoon, our group saw another Tiger in thickets near a waterhole and heard alarm calls – a deer in distress. Then, suddenly, a Sloth Bear broke out of a nearby thicket and our group got a fleeting glimpse of it as it retreated, followed by a sighting of two more Sloth Bears as they left the park. A great day!
 
 
If you would like to join one of our Tiger-watching tours in India 2017/18 please call Rajan Jolly on 01962 733051 or email rajan@naturetrek.co.uk