We saw our Royal Bengal Tiger today!!!
Once upon a time, thousands of tigers lived in India. Today there are only 1700 tigers remaining. There are 49 tigers living in Ranthambore Tiger Reserve, one of the best tiger reserves in India. We went on safari twice. The first time, we didn’t see any tigers, just tracks, though we did see a lot of wildlife, including crocodiles, soft shelled turtles, many birds, spotted deer, and antelopes. On the second outing, we got very lucky and we saw a very beautiful tiger, a mother of two 2-year old cubs! She was a beauty! Arvind has been on some 50 tiger safari trips and has never seen anything like what we saw today. Our guide, Mohan, also said that in his 10 years of working at the park, he has never seen what we saw today!
What we saw was incredible:
The tiger walked right in front of our jeep, walked over to a pond to drink water, then walked closer to the jeep, laid down, and started preening herself! We watched her lick her paws, and her entire body. She made sounds like happy yawns and sweet soft playful roaring sounds. She reminded me of a giant kitty! She yawned for us, got up, turned around and laid down in a different position. She looked right at us, and then she would look around the forest. We were so amazed and got to watch her for 45 minutes! The duration of her sighting and the proximity of the tiger to our van was extraordinarily close. Though I have a very nice Leica camera, I do not have a good zoom lens. Even so, you will see from the photos in the slide show that I was able to photograph the tiger fairly well because she was so close to us!
Some of the others in our group had cameras with big zoom lenses and they captured better photos than I did. Later, I will post Rebecca’s photos, which are extraordinary! For now, you can see mine. View on Full Screen and turn up your speakers. All photos taken today.
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