Bhutan Collars Tendrel Zangmo the Tiger

Tendrel Zangmo (meaning auspicious omen) sends her location every hour through the Global Positioning System (GPS) collar.

Tendrel Zangmo the tiger collared at the Royal Manas National Park (RMNP). (Source: http://www.kuenselonline.com)

 

A team of foresters and Bhutanese biologists radio-collared a tiger for the first time, a major milestone in the history of tiger conservation.

The three-year-old female tiger weighing 110kgs was caught and collared on February 9 at the Royal Manas National Park (RMNP).

The National Tiger Centre’s (NTC) programme director, Tempa Tshering (PhD), said, “We were so overwhelmed that we even forgot to take pictures of the tiger."

To mark this auspicious milestone in tiger conversation in the country, she was named Tendrel Zangmo.

Tendrel Zangmo (meaning auspicious omen) sends her location every hour through the Global Positioning System (GPS) collar.

The tiger collaring team has been in the park’s forests looking for signs of tigers and monitoring their movements for almost a month.

Using safe trapping kits from the US to snare the tiger

“We imported trapping kits from the US and used humane ways of snaring the tiger,” said Tshering Tempa.

“We tested them to confirm that the traps would not injure the cat. We had conducted several drills to prepare ourselves.”

The whole collaring process lasted about 45 minutes and she was released without any injuries.

“We were a little nervous, but we are happy that everything went according to our plan,” Tshering Tempa said.

Purpose of trapping the tiger

The information she provides would be crucial to understanding tiger movement patterns, identifying key corridors, and mitigating human-tiger conflicts.

Tshering Tempa said that Bhutan is unique in that its tiger habitat is contiguous across the whole country and extends from lowland sub-tropical jungles all the way to the sub-alpine forests.

The highest altitude for tigers found in the world was recorded in the Wangchuck Centennial National Park at 4,400 metres above sea level.

Tshering Tempa said that not much is known about tigers living in the mountains.

“With this exercise, we will be pioneers in filling this critical information gap in the tiger science,” he said.

“What is more satisfying is that it is a Bhutanese team that carried out the whole operation.”

The team consisted of officials from NTC, foresters from RMNP, the Nature Conservation Division (NCD), and the Sarpang forest division.

Foresters call it the beginning of a new era of tiger conservation and monitoring in Bhutan.

The tiger is an apex predator and an umbrella species, which means that ensuring their survival allows many species to live and flourish in its large shared habitat.

Threats to the existence of tigers in Bhutan

However, threats to these cats still exist in the form of killing for profit or in retaliation, destruction of habitats for industries or subsistence.

Tshering Tempa said that a thriving illicit global trade has drastically reduced tiger populations across its range. Today, fewer than 3,800 tigers exist in the wild, spread across 13 countries in Asia and the Russian Far East.

The Bhutan Foundation funded the collaring project as part of a long-term project to conserve Bhutan’s mountain tigers.

 

By Tshering Palden (This article has been edited for the New Bhutan Times)

This article first appeared in Kuensel.

 


Related Posts

Snow Leopards – Ghosts of the Mountains

Called “ghosts of the mountains” by the Himalayan people because of their ability to mysteriously appear and disappear...

Jan 17, 2018 10:30

A Sanctuary for Animals in RSPCA Bhutan

As a young child, Tashi would hide the strays and keep them safe when dog catchers were sent to deal with the...

Jan 05, 2018 10:57

Man-made Pond Invites Black-Necked Cranes

Developed by the Royal Society for Protection of Nature (RSPN) last September, the pond ensures the safety of the winged...

Jan 10, 2018 16:52

Phobjikha Residents Support Black-Necked Crane Conservation

According to a study on the conservation of black-necked cranes and its perceived trade-offs in Phobjikha Valley, 75...

Dec 08, 2017 15:09

The Black-Necked Crane Festival

The arrival of the black-neck cranes signals the coming of winter and plays an integral role in the daily lives of the...

Nov 01, 2017 13:54

Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary To Adopt Climate Vulnerability...

The project will involve climate change vulnerability assessment of terrestrial and aquatic life, and communities in SWS...

Aug 07, 2017 13:28

Latest

News

Bhutan’s Satellite Deployed From ISS Along With Limited Edition Stamps Launched To Laud Event

Live-streamed on YouTube, representatives from various countries and institutes gathered at the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) in...

Aug 11, 2018 16:08

Daily Professional Fee Proposed For Tour Guides To Boost Tourism In Bhutan

Such an initiative is also thought to help boost the image of the profession in Bhutan and retain senior tour guides.

Aug 10, 2018 12:09

Features

In Commemoration Of World Elephant Day, Bhutan Records 678 Elephants, Up From 513 In 2011

There are 678 elephants in Bhutan, according to the second edition of the National Elephant Survey Report.

Aug 15, 2018 12:54

Discover Raju’s Passion For Making The Traditional Bhutanese Bow And Arrow

The class VI drop-out earns at least Nu 8,000 a month by making bows and arrows.

Aug 08, 2018 16:09

Sports

The Myriad Of Sporting Facilities Constructed In Bhutan To Promote Healthy Living

The government in its 11th FYP report stated that it undertook the development of various infrastructure and institutions to promote sports...

Jul 29, 2018 08:33

Adolescent Girls In Bhutan Learn About Health And Sanitation Through Weeklong District Cricket Championship

The national nutrition survey 2015 conducted by the Ministry of Health and UNICEF Bhutan found anaemia in adolescent girls to be a critical...

Jul 21, 2018 16:29

Business

Start-up Centre In Bhutan Held Session To Provide Advice On Doing Business For Entrepreneurs

Guidance was provided during the first session on starting a business held at the newly established start-up centre at Changzamtog, Thimphu.

Aug 14, 2018 12:06

SDF To Develop E-Commerce Platform And Support Start-Ups In The South Asian Region

The SDF has already achieved and disbursed US$ 47mn for 12 cross-border projects.

Jul 24, 2018 09:03

Travel

About 91 % Of International Visitors Intend To Revisit Bhutan And 85 % Want To Recommend Nation Of Happiness To Others

The majority (80.4 %) of the international visitors expressed that the culture and traditional charm attracted them to Bhutan.

Aug 13, 2018 12:11

DrukAir To Fly Between Bhutan And Singapore Via Guwahati Starting Sept 1

The new flight will connect Paro to Singapore via Guwahati.

Aug 09, 2018 10:37

Lifestyle

Gokab – The First Dance Studio To Be Registered In Bhutan For Dancing Enthusiasts

Gokab, a youth group comprising of mostly dance enthusiasts, has seen a healthy growth of membership numbers since its inception in 2015.

Aug 12, 2018 15:44

Red Rice Is Bhutan's Staple Food And This Brewery Has Turned It Into Its Flagship Beer

Namgay Artisanal Brewery is the new kid on the block and it’s got everyone talking about its red rice lager.

Aug 03, 2018 14:04

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!