because every tiger counts...
 

News

>> Leopards caught in snare trap: 1 dies, other injured   >> Foresters arrest poachers but no account of missing tigers   >> 2 tiger cubs found dead in MTR   >> Getting the numbers right   >> Seminar held on tiger conservation   >> Tiger cub dies in Madhya pradesh   >> Tiger found dead in M.P.’s Shahdol district   >> Madhya Pradesh: Tiger found dead in Shahdol, toll touches 33 in 13 months   >> Madhya Pradesh loses sixth tiger in 2018   >> Tiger killed in MP, 5th in 3 months   >> At 67, Ranthamhore tiger number at all time high   >> Census to help Karnataka retain ‘Tiger State’ status   >> Development ups tiger extinction risk by over 50 per cent in protected areas   >> Tiger census begins   >> Unique project by Uttarakhand Forest Dept: Drones to monitor wildlife corridors   >> First ever tiger census has fruitful count in Karnataka   >> First joint count of tigers in Sunderbans   >> Two tiger deaths in reported 12 hrs in MP   >> 1 critical after being mauled by tiger in Ranthambhore   >> 29 tigers killed in 1 year poaching not ruled out   >> Only 26 leopards left in PKL sanctuaries   >> New measures for tiger census   >> Nagaland: Two arrested with tiger, elephant bones, over Rs 61,000 in cash   >> Centre`s freeze on settling forest rights in tiger habitats to continue   >> Fatal crossings: tigers in 26 reserves under threat   >> Poaching case: Salman appears in Jodhpur court   >> MP Continues to Lose Tigers, First Death of 2018 Reported   >> Tiger Census from Jan 8, safari to be closed for a week   >> 115 tiger deaths recorded in 2017 MP tops the list, Maharashtra 2nd   >> What led to death of the big cats?   >> maharashtra saw 19 tiger deaths in 2017   >> MP records one-fourth of tiger deaths in India in 2017, highest in country   >> CZA seeks report from Raj govt on shifting of tiger `Ustad`   >> Tigress falls prey to wire trap at Panna reserve   >> Tiger cub rescued in A.P.   >> India, neighbours agree to conduct joint tiger census   >> Ranthambore full, two tigers to be shifted   >> Wildlife numbers fall in Jharkhand even as forest cover increases   >> Winter tiger census in Anamalai forest   >> Poacher held with civet carcass in Castle Rock   >> Rajasthan seeks nod to bring tigers from other States   >> Rhino abode short of guards, poaching up   >> Foresters begin probe into death of tiger cub   >> Electric fences killing tigers in Maharashtra   >> State toll 23 as 2 tigers `poisoned`   >> Satkosia tiger reserve set to get 172 sq km more   >> Rhino Killed in Kaziranga   >> Wildlife department to use camera traps to fight poaching   >> Tiger leaves resort at Kabini, enters forest   >> Tiger mauls 10 yr old girl to death in Madhya Pradesh   >> more >>   
 

General Articles

back Go Back        Print

Royal sightings with a difference

Muthukumar K, The Hindu Business Line
Chennai
20 Mar 2017

The couple at Skay’s Camp bring their rich knowledge of Bandhavgarh tigers to the table
The couple at Skay’s Camp bring their rich knowledge of Bandhavgarh tigers to the table



The couple at Skay’s Camp bring their rich knowledge of Bandhavgarh tigers to the table

On New Year’s Eve, an American family came to stay at the Skay’s Camp Lodge near Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh.

Their objective: to spot Royal Bengal tigers. They set out on a six-seater open Gypsy to the Khitauli zone of the reserve, along with Satyendra Kumar Tiwari, owner of Skay’s Camp.

As luck would have it, Satyendra spotted a fresh pugmark. He asked the jeep driver to follow it. The pugmark eventually led to a small waterhole close to the road.

They had hardly moved forward about 50 metres, when dust engulfed the road, and from the dust emerged a tiger, like a true hero. But the din of jeeps accelerating towards the animal drove the tiger back into the forest.

Satyendra went by his instinct and asked the driver to move forward by about 100 metres. Within minutes, the tiger was back on the road — and was soon following them!

A glimpse turned into a sighting of 40 minutes with the tiger steadily following their jeep for about 4 km, almost as if to ensure they left.

More than a lodge

Skay’s Camp is the home of Satyendra and his wife Kay at Tala near Bandhavgarh National Park, where they run their lodge. All 86 reviews on the Trip Advisor website have given a 5-star rating to their experiences at the lodge. “They bring passion, knowledge and experience of the tigers in the region (to the table),” posts a traveller from UK.

Satyendra is an ex-lodge manager with Madhya Pradesh Tourism who quit to become a full-time wildlife tour operator. His wife Kay (originally from UK) is a wildlife enthusiast.

Both have been into wildlife tourism for the last 35 years. Kay has been instrumental in naming many of the tigers at Bandhavgarh, that are now followed by the park authorities. When she came to Bandhavgarh way back in 1994-95, few tigers were actually named.

She wanted to keep track of the cubs born to tigresses and began naming them. Males born to Bachchi were coded B1, B2 and B3. Moreover, there was some method in the naming. B2 was named Sundar (meaning beautiful) as he was beautiful; females were given proper names like Durga, Jay and Indrani.

Over the years, Kay has maintained tiger identification papers with visual and written diaries on the daily events inside the park, along with a complete family tree.

Satyendra in turn is an avid wildlife photographer, whose photograph of a tiger cub appeared on the front cover of BBC Wildlife Magazine in 2004.

Both Satyendra and Kay have spent a considerable amount of their time gathering information on the flora and fauna of Bandhavgarh. Snakes, birds, butterflies, wild dogs and more. At Skay’s Camp, it is not just tigers but a thorough and honest view of Bandhavgarh itself, they promise.
×

Wild goose chase

However, the chances of spotting a tiger depend on whether you want to look for a particular tiger or any tiger, says Satyendra. He says that the moment you think any tiger will do, the chances of your sighting one comes down.

This is because now only 20 per cent of the area is open to tourists, reducing the chances of spotting tigers.

And if one goes on a wild goose chance, the chances get even lower than a focussed approach to track down a particular tiger.

Satyendra advises tourists, in their own interest, to not be greedy. “You may be able to see the tiger for a longer duration if it is allowed to roam freely in its own kingdom,” he says.

No hopping around

“Moreover, hopping around three different national parks in a week will not give you much knowledge about wildlife or the park,” Satyendra adds. One may see a tiger, but may not be able to see the park properly. He advises tourists to spend a minimum of five nights in a park.


Business Line, New Delhi
Planning

Satyendra advises travellers to do some homework about the park they plan to visit. Since the booking can now be done online, planning helps.

“You may start planning, sometimes, four months in advance to get the selected tourism zone,” he says. At Bandhavgarh, the safari zones are Tala, Magadhi and Khitauli.

Tala is the most popular for tiger sighting and is usually in demand throughout the season.

Hot season

As summer nears, the prospects of spotting a tiger increases as it visits waterholes often to quench its thirst. Ironically, the best time to go on a tiger safari is April-June, which is also the lean period for hotels.

“It’s very hot during that time and we often slash rates to encourage tourists ,” says an official at a luxury hotel near the Bandhavgarh park.

Wildlife tourism has turned into luxury tourism near Bandhavgarh national park in the last decade, says Satyendra. Skay’s Camp lodge, while not luxurious, gives travellers a different experience at an undisclosed cost. To entertain serious wildife enthusiasts, it serves only vegetarian food.

Interestingly, Skay’s Camp helps you zero in on a particular tiger instead of any tiger. This can be fun. Game to meet Somanshu, Yoshila or Trya?
(This article was published on March 19, 2017)





The couple at Skay’s Camp bring their rich knowledge of Bandhavgarh tigers to the table

On New Year’s Eve, an American family came to stay at the Skay’s Camp Lodge near Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh.

Their objective: to spot Royal Bengal tigers. They set out on a six-seater open Gypsy to the Khitauli zone of the reserve, along with Satyendra Kumar Tiwari, owner of Skay’s Camp.

As luck would have it, Satyendra spotted a fresh pugmark. He asked the jeep driver to follow it. The pugmark eventually led to a small waterhole close to the road.

They had hardly moved forward about 50 metres, when dust engulfed the road, and from the dust emerged a tiger, like a true hero. But the din of jeeps accelerating towards the animal drove the tiger back into the forest.

Satyendra went by his instinct and asked the driver to move forward by about 100 metres. Within minutes, the tiger was back on the road — and was soon following them!

A glimpse turned into a sighting of 40 minutes with the tiger steadily following their jeep for about 4 km, almost as if to ensure they left.

More than a lodge

Skay’s Camp is the home of Satyendra and his wife Kay at Tala near Bandhavgarh National Park, where they run their lodge. All 86 reviews on the Trip Advisor website have given a 5-star rating to their experiences at the lodge. “They bring passion, knowledge and experience of the tigers in the region (to the table),” posts a traveller from UK.

Satyendra is an ex-lodge manager with Madhya Pradesh Tourism who quit to become a full-time wildlife tour operator. His wife Kay (originally from UK) is a wildlife enthusiast.

Both have been into wildlife tourism for the last 35 years. Kay has been instrumental in naming many of the tigers at Bandhavgarh, that are now followed by the park authorities. When she came to Bandhavgarh way back in 1994-95, few tigers were actually named.

She wanted to keep track of the cubs born to tigresses and began naming them. Males born to Bachchi were coded B1, B2 and B3. Moreover, there was some method in the naming. B2 was named Sundar (meaning beautiful) as he was beautiful; females were given proper names like Durga, Jay and Indrani.

Over the years, Kay has maintained tiger identification papers with visual and written diaries on the daily events inside the park, along with a complete family tree.

Satyendra in turn is an avid wildlife photographer, whose photograph of a tiger cub appeared on the front cover of BBC Wildlife Magazine in 2004.

Both Satyendra and Kay have spent a considerable amount of their time gathering information on the flora and fauna of Bandhavgarh. Snakes, birds, butterflies, wild dogs and more. At Skay’s Camp, it is not just tigers but a thorough and honest view of Bandhavgarh itself, they promise.
×

Wild goose chase

However, the chances of spotting a tiger depend on whether you want to look for a particular tiger or any tiger, says Satyendra. He says that the moment you think any tiger will do, the chances of your sighting one comes down.

This is because now only 20 per cent of the area is open to tourists, reducing the chances of spotting tigers.

And if one goes on a wild goose chance, the chances get even lower than a focussed approach to track down a particular tiger.

Satyendra advises tourists, in their own interest, to not be greedy. “You may be able to see the tiger for a longer duration if it is allowed to roam freely in its own kingdom,” he says.

No hopping around

“Moreover, hopping around three different national parks in a week will not give you much knowledge about wildlife or the park,” Satyendra adds. One may see a tiger, but may not be able to see the park properly. He advises tourists to spend a minimum of five nights in a park.


Business Line, New Delhi
Planning

Satyendra advises travellers to do some homework about the park they plan to visit. Since the booking can now be done online, planning helps.

“You may start planning, sometimes, four months in advance to get the selected tourism zone,” he says. At Bandhavgarh, the safari zones are Tala, Magadhi and Khitauli.

Tala is the most popular for tiger sighting and is usually in demand throughout the season.

Hot season

As summer nears, the prospects of spotting a tiger increases as it visits waterholes often to quench its thirst. Ironically, the best time to go on a tiger safari is April-June, which is also the lean period for hotels.

“It’s very hot during that time and we often slash rates to encourage tourists ,” says an official at a luxury hotel near the Bandhavgarh park.

Wildlife tourism has turned into luxury tourism near Bandhavgarh national park in the last decade, says Satyendra. Skay’s Camp lodge, while not luxurious, gives travellers a different experience at an undisclosed cost. To entertain serious wildife enthusiasts, it serves only vegetarian food.

Interestingly, Skay’s Camp helps you zero in on a particular tiger instead of any tiger. This can be fun. Game to meet Somanshu, Yoshila or Trya?
(This article was published on March 19, 2017)