The carcass of an adult tigress was found near a road that passes through the Mala range of the Pilibhit Tiger Reserve (PTR) in Uttar Pradesh.
Officials said that it seemed that the tigress was injured after being hit by a speeding vehicle and later succumbed to the wounds.
The carcass was first spotted by a local on Wednesday. There were injury marks on the head, possibly caused by an SUV or a mini truck.
The tyre marks were not visible since it has been continuously raining in the area.
After getting information, field director Javed Akhtar along with deputy director Naveen Khandelwal and veterinarian Daksh Gangwar reached the spot and sent the carcass to the Indian Veterinary Research Institute in Bareilly for autopsy.
In the autopsy, the tigress was to be Covid negative.
“The tigress was around 13-year-old and all her body organs were found intact so the possibility of poaching has been ruled out,” said Khandelwal.
“We have registered an FIR against an unidentified driver under relevant sections of the Wildlife Protection Act. We are trying to trace the vehicle and its driver. The locals have been alerted and we are hopeful of a breakthrough soon.”
This is the fifth such tiger death in the state in the last three months.
Earlier, an adult tigress was found dead in Kishanpur Wildlife Sanctuary of Dudhwa Tiger Reserve in Lakhimpur Kheri district on April 13.
On March 21, an adult tiger was found dead in the same sanctuary.
Also, an adult tiger was electrocuted in a field near the social forestry area of Lakhimpur Kheri district on March 1, when it came in contact with electric fencing laid by poachers.
On March 15, the carcass of an adult tigress was found in PTR’s Mala forest range. Its four cubs were rescued and shifted to Lucknow zoo.