It was an exciting moment for the four tigresses of Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden on Monday as they got a male companion here.
After the death of Lachit, a male Royal Bengal tiger, in June last year the four female tigers- Two Royal Bengal Tigers and two white tigers –had no male partner since then.
Born in the Assam State Zoo in 2009, Lachit died on June 27 last year due to encephalitis.
Two and half-year-old Dhanush, a male Royal Bengal tiger, arrived at state zoo here from Mysore to be a mate of the four tigresses. Dhanush will spread the bloodline of the big cats in the zoo.
“We wanted a male tiger so that it can mate with its female counterparts and spread the bloodline. There are four other big cats in the zoo including two white tigers but all of them are females. The fact that Dhanush hails from Karnataka will help us to get a cross between two different breeds, i.e, southern and eastern tigers,” Tejas Mariswamy, DFO, Guwahati Zoo, told Northeast Now.
Maheshwary further pointed out that a Royal Bengal tiger can mate with a white tiger.
“Actually, mating between a Royal Bengal tiger and white tiger is encouraged. Genetically, it is not advisable that a white tiger should mate with another white tiger. Anyway, white tigers have become rare in the wild now. They are mostly bred in captivity,” he added.
The tiger will be released for public viewing after three-four days. “Dhanush has just arrived today from Mysore. He is tired and also a bit angry today. A change has happened around him. It will take few days to get him adjust with the new environment,” Mariswamy said.
Guwahati zoo also has four black panthers, which DFO Mariswamy, said is the highest panther count in any Indian zoo.
Apart from this Royal Bengal guest, the state zoo also got two blackbucks and two peafowls on Monday as a part of an exchange programme with Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens, Mysore.
The State zoo, in return gave away four white pelicans, two brahminy ducks, four barking deer, two four horned antelopes, two brow antler deer and two leopards.