- By Biswaranjan Pattnaik
Angul: Satkosia Tiger Reserve, situated in Angul district, is poised to welcome a pair of Royal Bengal Tiger in the upcoming year 2024. The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has granted approval for this initiative, and preparations are in their final stages, with the sanctuary eagerly anticipating the arrival of a male and a female tiger by the close of 2024, as revealed by reliable sources.
The Satkosia Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), Saroj Panda, affirmed that all necessary arrangements have reached a final stage . The sanctuary has undergone significant transformations, prompted by the loss of its tiger population to climate change and increased hunting activities in the past. Despite facing challenging circumstances, the reserve introduced tiger Kanha and tigress Sundari in 2018, transported from Madhya Pradesh and Bandhavgarh, respectively. However, the Project Tiger initiative faced setbacks, with Sundari being relocated due to local opposition and Kanha falling victim to hunters.
In response to these challenges, the NTCA advised a comprehensive makeover of the sanctuary to create a more favorable habitat for tigers. This led to a substantial transformation of the Satkosia Tiger Reserve, including the relocation of Raiguda, Katarang, Asanabahal, and Tuluka villages outside the Satkosia forest area. The initiative also involved the development of grazing fields and ecological balance.
The DFO emphasized that the well-being and security of the relocated residents remain a top priority. Additionally, the conservation efforts have resulted in an increase in the number of herbivores, marking a positive outcome of the sanctuary’s development endeavors.