India mourns loss of ‘Supermom’ tigress, bids emotional farewell

India’s most famous tigress, known as “Supermom” for giving birth to 29 cubs during her lifetime, has died, triggering widespread grief among Indians.

The tigress died of complications due to old age at the Pench Tiger Reserve in central India on Saturday evening, park chief Ashok Kumar Mishra said on Monday, adding the big cat was more than 16 years old.

She was also known as Collarwali in Hindi, as she was the first feline to be radio-collared at the reserve in 2008.

“It is rare for a tigress to give birth to 29 cubs, including five in one go, and successfully raise 25, this perhaps earned her the title of Supermom among wildlife lovers,” he said.



The beautiful, graceful cat was a darling of visitors to the reserve and often described as the most photographed tiger in the world, local media reported.

Visuals showed several locals attending the cremation of the tigress, which was done in accordance with Hindu rites. Some held garlands while others folded their hands, paying their respects to Collarwali.

Social media were abuzz with Indians posting tributes and bidding farewell to the beloved Collarwali.



“Tribute to the ‘Super Tigress Mom’…The forests of Madhya Pradesh will always resonate with the roar of the cubs of the ‘Queen of Pench Tiger Reserve’,” state Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said on Twitter.

Wildlife experts said Collarwali played a key role in maintaining the tiger population of the reserve, which reportedly has more than 130 tigers.

India is home to about 75 percent of the world’s tiger population and its conservation efforts have been fairly successful, with a 2018 census counting 2,967 big cats.

SOURCE: NEWS AGENCIES

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