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Trap for tigress nets thief, tiger

Gosaba, Dec. 1: Frequent visits by a Royal Bengal Tiger, an elaborate trap laid by the forest department guards to deter the unwanted visitor and, finally, a thief angling for the bait a goat getting caught before the tiger itself: villagers of Bali could not have hoped for more excitement over the past fortnight.

It all started with villagers complaining that they had sighted a tigress with two cubs to boot in the vicinity of their village. The family would swim back to the Pirkhali forest across Vidya river, they said.

Alerted, the forest department laid a traditional trap with a goat for bait a fortnight ago. A week later, the guards found that the trap had been sprung. But to their amazement, there was a man in the trap, instead of a tiger. The man, intent on stealing the goat, had stepped into the trap and remained inside for a whole night.

Finally, yesterday morning they found a full-grown tiger, but it was not the female that had been sighted. The tiger was taken to a remote part of the Sundarbans forest this morning and released, said Sundarbans Biosphere director A.K. Raha.

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