B2 of Bandhavgarh
This is a visual tribute to B2, Sundar, the 'King' of Bandhavgarh National Park in India, who died on the 20 November 2011 from wounds inflicted upon him in a territorial dispute with a younger and stronger male tiger. B2 and his two brothers were born in April 1997 to 'Mohini' one of Bandhavgarh's well known female tigers. B2 was the boldest of the three brothers. At the age of four he took over the prime home range of his grandfather, 'Charger', in a territorial dispute. He then reigned supreme as the dominant male tiger within a large area of Bandhavgarh's Tala range for a number of years siring many cubs with at least four different tigresses. During the ten years I have been visiting the park, I saw and photographed this magnificent tiger many times - I truly looked forward to catching up with him on each occasion. My first sighting of him was in 2001. Driving along a track through the forest there was the pungent smell of an animal carcass nearby. We mounted the elephants waiting for us and proceeded through the thick forest arriving at a nala (dried up river bed) where we found B2 resting with a very full stomach! He had made a successful kill of a Sambar deer and had partly consumed it.
Tiger Conservation In India
Over the last three years B2 had experienced pressure from other male tigers attempting to encroach upon his extensive home range and to mate with the tigresses in his territory. In particular a very large and powerful tiger known as the Bamera male who was in fact B2's son and had begun to push him towards the Mirchani or outer area of the park; this proved to be the last stronghold of his home range. Sadly on the 20 November 2011, B2 died from the wounds inflicted upon him in a dispute with another male tiger (this in all probability was the Bamera male). After a post mortem his body was cremated. Although this wonderful old tiger has gone he will never be forgotten - he will always be remembered by the many thousands of visitors to the park who were privileged to see him during the years that he reigned supreme. I hope that his offspring will also continue to thrive in his footsteps at Bandhavgarh.
1997 to 2011
Rest in Peace