All that can be said about the 2015-16 season at Bandhavgarh was nothing less than fruitful for Team GoingWild.
Consolidated Summary of the Tours:
The season started with the tour of November 2015. A tour which during which we got to see the current litter of Rajbehra tigress and this was the first sighting of the family for regular tourists. Also the male cub of Patiha tigress was seen and photographed. In 6 safaris 6 tigers were spotted!
The next tour was in December 2015. The tour started with a bit of hiccups and we were devoid of tiger sightings for the first 3 safaris then on the fourth safari in Bhool Bhulaiya area the Mahaman male was seen lying on the track for a good amount of time.
After that we saw the male cub of Patiha tigress again, whom we had also seen in the previous tour.
Apart from tiger sightings the key highlights of this tour were my first and only sighting of Dholes from Bandhavgarh and sighting of a porcupine!
The next tour was in the month of February 2016. A tour which was extremely slow to start off as far as tiger sightings are concerned but ended with 8 tigers being sighted. The sightings included those of Patiha tigress, Spotty (also called the current Damnar/Mirchaini female and happens to be the daughter of Patiha tigress), most probably Mr X (son of late Bamera Male and late Kankati) near Kanauji saucer as he walked into the closed route with his back to us very early in the morning and the entire Rajbehra family.
Then came a blast of a tour, April 2016, which yielded 11 tiger sightings and 10 different tigers were seen. Jr. Kankati, the entire Rajbehra family, Mangu Male, Dotty, Solo and Mr. X were seen during this tour.
The tour also included a safari when 9 tigers were seen in 5 different tiger sightings. The next highlight of the tour was the sighting of a leopard making the kill of a chital stag. The tour continued brilliantly and ended with a total of 11 tiger sightings over 7 safaris. Many amazing photographic opportunities got presented to us.
4 more safaris after the finishing of the April tour (basically an extension of the tour) resulted in further 7 tigers being sighted. These sightings included the rare sighting of Dhamadhama tigress with her sole female cub from the current litter who was, at that time, only about 5 months old.
The next couple of tours were in May 2016. The first of these tours resulted in 8 tiger sightings. These included sightings of Banbei tigress, Spotty, Dotty walking head-on, Solo and the Mahaman Male.
The second tour of May 2016 yeilded 7 tiger sightings which included the sightings of 2 male cubs of Rajbehra female’s current litter, Banbei female and her male cub Samrat, female cub of Rajbehra female’s current litter, Solo, Jr. Kankati and glimpse of an unknown male tiger.
The tour also resulted in a very rare sighting of a sloth bear taking bath in a small waterhole. It was indeed a moment of life time for all of us as when, if even, we will again get to seen a sloth bear taking a dip.
An addition of a personal safari after the second tour in May 2016 again resulted in sightings of two different tigers. The Mahaman male and Mr. X.
The final tour of the season happened in the month of June 2016. In this 5 safari tour 4 tigers were seen; the Rajbehra tigress, Mahaman male, Dotty and Samrat.
It was an amazing season with some superb opportunities of tiger photography being presented to us during many of these sightings.
We are looking forward to a even more fruitful time in the upcoming season as we are expecting a few more tigresses in Bandhavgarh to have cubs.
Last but not the least all of this wouldn’t have been possible without the tremendous ground support of Mr. Mukesh Burman and his team of drivers Vikas, Ram Bhauri and Santosh Burman. A very big thanks to you all.
Anyone interested in joining our tours to this heaven of tigers can mail us to [email protected] for the details of upcoming tours. We also arrange customized tours for individuals and groups. Just let us know and we will try our best to give you the best!
I too want to visit some tiger reserve....