Royal Bengal Tiger, Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve, India by Narayanan Iyer

Picture Story

Seeing a tiger in the wild is a dream for many. Fortunately, nature has blessed me a lot when it comes to tiger sightings and this was one such scenario wherein we saw a beautiful tigress siting inside a water hole. We were the only people there at this spot, so we decided to wait. Honestly we had no clue of her presence. When we were tracking her, all of a sudden a huge leopard sprinted right in front of us as if, it was running for its life. The first thought was, it ran away by sensing our presence. Even then I was not convinced and decided to scan the place. Glad I did as we found this beautiful tigress, Choti Madhu which locals fondly call her. She was the reason for the leopards disappearance. After some time, in slow motion, she rose, and started walking majestically and we were engulfed in her aura. She was marking her territory to warn other tigers of her presence and in that process she disappeared into the thickets. Judging by her usual movement pattern, we decided to wait at the opposite side and suspected she may appear from there. We waited there for more then half an hour and seeing us waiting, other vehicles joined us. The jungle was silent when we heard a 'chch chch chch chch' sound. It was her making that sound as she was walking on the carpet of dead leaves which gave us a positive sign. Five minutes after that, she arrived elegantly right in front of us, walking in our direction which gave me an opportunity to make this image of her looking directly at me.

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