Heartbreaking news emerged today of the death of five year-old tiger Vichit, who was found in a creek in Mae Wong National Park in Kamphaeng Phet. The tiger, originally born in Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary, had strayed from its habitat before tragically passing away.
Rungroj Asavakultarin, chief of Nakhon Sawan’s Protected Areas Regional Office 12, informed officials that rangers had discovered the carcass near a creek on January 9th. A veterinary team then examined the body at the Mae Wong National Park Office and found several wounds on the tiger’s body and neck, broken front ankles and traces of other animal fangs.
Pimchanok Songmongkol, the vet who conducted the examination, said the tiger was male and weighed approximately 100 kilos. She further confirmed that the tiger had been dead for about three days and had begun to decay, with flies and worms visible in the wounds.
The cause of death was determined to be septicemia, a blood poisoning caused by bacteria or toxins, and not as a result of human interference. The bones of the tiger will be kept for further study as tigers are an endangered species, while the skin and meat must be burned according to the policy of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife, and Plant Conservation.
Khao Nang Rum Wildlife Research Station in Uthai Thani Province informed that Vichit had been born five years ago in the Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary and had since migrated to Mae Wong National Park in February of last year. Ms Pimchanok concluded that there are many male tigers in the area and they may have been fighting for territory, leading to Vichit’s untimely death.
Vichit’s death is a tragedy, with the tiger having been part of the World Wildlife Fund’s repopulation programme. He will be remembered for the reminder of the importance of protecting our precious wildlife.