I broke my jinx after all and sighted a tiger! And what a sighting it was! She is known as the collared tigress of Pench. The trick is the collar no longer emits a signal. So it is a double whammy in a sense. You see a collared tigress where the collar provides no help in tracing her. But then I am in no mood to complain! She passed so close by that I could capture a video on my cell phone! So here I go.
Her Royal Highness the Collared Tigress of Pench
Actually I saw just a vanishing tail to begin with. A jeep full of school children were in front of us. After I had looked at the vanishing tail they told us the tigress passed by them just a while ago, waving their cell phones! I was sure they had their cell phones full with the tigress pictures. I was happy with that fleeting glimpse as even this was a first. I could get nothing on the camera as she was in thick bushes. But then our ace trackers (and other ace trackers in other jeeps) decided to pursue it. We had Motiram ji from the park. And we of course had a naturalist from Taj Safaris as well, Ramesh. I did all my rides with Ramesh and he is an excellent naturalist. I am always going to remember both of them as this has been my first sighting after I do not even know how many safaris and national parks!
And if you are on a slow internet connection here is a photo for you, otherwise do watch the video. I actually had to zoom out to click this picture, the tigress was so close. More when I reach home.
I am still dazed. I was of course excited to death. But what really amazes me is the excitement and enthusiasm of the naturalist show even though they see so many big cats. They take trouble to track it down, drive far away and show amazing patience both with the animal and the human beings! Thank you Motiram ji and Ramesh for breaking my jinx. I also had lovely companions from Maharashtra who were in a group of three. But they included me so well that it never felt like I was an unknown outsider.