JV and THE BIG CATS


Home

Mission

Founder: John Varty

Tiger Canyons
Tiger Experiment
Invest in Tigers
Tiger Canyons tigers

Tiger Anatomy

Tourism

Volunteers
Merchandise
Research
JV Image Library
JV's Music

JV's Films

Poaching

Tiger Conservation

Tiger Subspecies

Tiger Newsletters

Tiger Photo Gallery

Contact us


 

 


Select newsletter in right column


Newsletter 38
06/09/10

Beauty Comes at a Price

Dear Friends

In my most recent newsletter, "The Light Has Gone Out", I informed you that they tigress Shine was killed by the 18 month old male, Corbett. This is only partially correct.

Shine, before and after

I now have evidence that suggests Shine was darted by poachers attempting to kill or steal her and was possibly killed by Corbett as she recovered from or was under the influence of the unaesthetic.

Another male tiger, Sariska, left Tiger Canyons either dead or alive, on the same night that Shine died and has not been seen again.


Sariska (right) with siblings Corbett and Panna before he disappeared

For this poaching to have taken place, there must be motive.

Shine was hand-raised and with her gentle nature and incredible beauty, she had huge value to zoos, private dealers and film wranglers. In Hollywood where tigers are used extensively for feature movies and adverts, Shine's value would have been in the region of $500 000 dollars.

I had had many offers from zoos, safari parks and private collectors to sell her. All were refused, as I was determined that she would become a wild tigress. I was keen to research the effect of her white colour on her ability to hunt.

Sariska has less value as he is wild born and raised and is a normal coloured tiger. However, illegal canned tiger hunting is rising in South Africa and he would have value as a trophy.

In Asia the demand for tiger bones, knuckles, skins, claws, teeth, fat, urine and even whiskers, is rising daily. It is possible that the rhino poachers have turned their attention to tigers in South Africa as the Asian buyers for rhino horn would be the same people buying tiger body parts.

In South Africa alone, 150 rhino have been poached for their horn during 2010.


rhino horn
 

Elmo with poached rhino

JV with poached elephant

JV with poached lion

Just two farms away from Tiger Canyons, is one of the largest breeders of white rhino in South Africa. In an attempt to combat the poaching, all the rhinos are dehorned. Rhino horn now fetches more than gold ounce for ounce.

Ironically, I had placed Tiger Canyons in the centre of South Africa where I believed there was no culture of tiger poaching. It seems I was wrong, very wrong!

Today at Tiger Canyons, I discovered a hole in the fence which the poachers cut with wire cutters and then replaced carefully after they left.

The large fenced area where Sariska and Shine were, runs next to an access road. I believe the poachers came in on this road at night and shot the tigers from outside the fence. A dart gun is silent, no noise to attract attention.

Once the tiger dropped from the anaesthetizing drug, hopefully close to the fence, within 4 to 5 minutes, the poachers would cut through the fence and short the 6000 volt electrical wires to neutralize the current. This is a simple maneuver for someone who understands electrical fences. Now using a winch, they could pull the tiger back through the fence and load the tiger onto the back of a truck and then cover it with a tarpaulin.

If they wanted it dead, they would euthanize it if they wanted it alive they would keep it anaesthetized. The operation is carried out in the dead of night.

Not every tiger reacts the same to the immobilizing drug. Some will drop quickly close to where they are darted, others will high-step away and travel some distance before falling. In Shine's case, she was exceptionally big and may have been under dosed with the result that she staggered away from the fence and fell in the heavy bush. Here Corbett found and killed her.

Before the advent of an antidote, we darted many lions at Londolozi. We always sat for several hours with the darted lion as it was recovering from the drug. This was to protect them from other lions and spotted hyena. I have seen a lion that was under dosed killed and eaten by its own pride as it staggered around in a drunken state.

In the early hours of the morning that Shine died, I cross-questioned two men in a truck trespassing on Tiger Canyons. They claimed they were lost. I believe these two men are connected to the death of Shine and the disappearance of Sariska. I regret now I didn't take the registration of the vehicle and search the truck. I am offering a reward of R100 000 for information leading to the arrest of these men.

The Department of Nature Conservation of the Free State and the Philippolis Police Force are investigation this case of poaching. Specialized anti-poaching detectives have been hired to investigate any tigers changing hands at Big Cat establishments throughout South Africa.

Tiger Canyons is installing surveillance cameras on all roads and at strategic points throughout the reserve. It is also bringing in game scouts to maintain a 24 hour security. All tigers are micro-chipped and some have tracking devices implanted in them.

Poached rhino, elephant, leopard

This is the world we live in. Nothing safe, nothing sacred. The rhinos walk around with no horns to ensure their survival, a magnificent tigress, Shine, dies because of her rarity and incredible beauty. Greed and profit of human beings, the motive.

Tread lightly on the Earth
JV

 

Tread lightly on the Earth

info@jvbigcats.co.za
Copyright 2007 @jvbigcats  All rights reserved


Newsletters


Newsletter 150
14/09/17
The Survivor

Newsletters 149
05/09/17
In pursuit of Alan Root

Newsletters 148
09/08/17
Open letter re schools plus Panna cubs

Newsletters 147
17/07/17
It's Finished

Newsletters 146
31/05/17
Hunters

Newsletter 145
20/05/17
King Corbett

Newsletter 144
08/05/17
Hunting versus Non Hunting

Newsletter 143
14/03/17
If it Pays, it Stays

Newsletters 142
14/02/17
Best Photographs at
Tiger Canyons

Newsletters 141
16/01/17
Lady Hunters

Newsletter 140
10/12/16
Londolozi and Love

Newsletter 139
23/11/16
Life is Not Fair

Newsletter 138
17/11/16
The Trump Card

Newsletter 137
22/10/16
Most Admired People on the Planet

Newsletters 136
13/10/16
Captive vs Wild

Newsletter 135
08/10/16
To trade  or not To Trade

Newsletter 134
08/08/16
A Defining Moment

Newsletter 133
08/07/16
I Have Lost A Friend

Newsletter 132
13/05/16
The World is Changing

Newsletter 131
08/04/16
Icon Cats

Newsletter 130
31/03/16
Sylvester the Lion

Newsletter 129
22/03/16
An Open Letter to Head United Nations

Newsletter 128
15/03/16
An Open Letter to Carte Blanche

Newsletter 127
28/11/15
Satellite Tracking

Newsletter 126
12/11/15
Lightning strikes 3 times

Newsletter 125
28/10/15
The Break Out

Newsletter 124
05/10/15
Bad Tigers

Newsletter 123
01/10/15
Tiger Boy's Journey

Newsletter 122
13/09/15
Give it a Name

Newsletter 121
10/09/15
Driven Hunts

Newsletter 120
01/09/15
Creative Conservation

Newsletter 119
12/08/15
Sariska from birth till death

Newsletter 118
11/08/15
Real Hunters

Newsletter 117
07/08/15
An Open Letter to the President: Operation Wild Lion

Newsletter 116
03/08/15
An Open Letter to Theo Bronkhorst

Newsletter 115
28/07/15
Cruel Nations

Newsletter 114
08/07/15
Subspecies or no subspecies

Newsletter 113
11/06/15
Tigers Moving Forward

Newsletter 112
13/04/15
Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Newsletter 111
26/03/15
Don't Shoot the Messenger

Newsletter 110
22/03/15
The Hunters

Newsletter 109
09/03/15
Gaia or God?

Newsletter 108
26/02/15
The Healing Power of Cats

Newsletter 107
18/02/15
Goddess Gaia

Newsletter 106
03/02/15
Ambassador Cats

Newsletter 105
24/01/15
Blondes have more fun

Invitation
09/01/15
Gaining ground for tigers

Newsletter 103
14/12/14
Tibo's Dilemma

Newsletter 102
05/12/14
Wilderness Man

Newsletter 101
25/11/14
Sariska fathers cubs with white Tigress Tibo

Newsletter 100
20/11/14
Cheetah Survival

Newsletter 99
30/09/14
Extract from JV's speech on Corbett's Freedom Day

Newsletter 98
15/08/14
The Power of the Picture

Newsletter 97
18/07/14
Tiger Corbett's Release

Newsletter 96
11/07/14
Corbett's Journey

Newsletter 95
18/06/14
Bush School: Where are they now?

Newsletter 94
12/05/14
Open letter to Jani Allen: Oscar Pistorius

Newsletter 93
07/05/14
John Varty interview with Sizie Modise

Newsletter 92
20/04/14
Marion's Big Cat Safari

Newsletter 91
24/02/14
Full energy flow

Newsletter 90
10/02/14
Investing in wild tigers

Newsletter 89
05/02/14
Where are the Champions?

Newsletter 88
27/01/14
Managing the Genes

Newsletter 87
16/01/14
Capture the Moment

Newsletter 86
07/12/13
The Princess Diana of Tigers - Julie:
 Sept 1999 - 5 Des 2013

Newsletter 85
26/11/13
The Communicators

Newsletter 84
26/11/13
A Letter to All Conservationists in SA 
Sparked by the whole Melissa Bachman Debacle
by Maxine Gaines

Newsletter 83
16/11/13
Tell me what happened

Newsletter 82
04/11/13
Profit is the Name of Your Game

Newsletter 81
30/10/13

Big Cat Cub Safari


Newsletter 80
18/10/13
In the Jaws of the Tiger

Newsletter 79
11/10/13
Open letter to Vice President Cyril Ramaphosa about rhino crisis

Newsletter 78
06/10/13
Open letter to Min of Defense, South Africa about rhino crisis

Newsletter 77
30/09/13
Digital Photography

Newsletter 76
06/09/13
Zoochosis

Newsletter 75
20/07/13
Rhino Horn Trade - Response

Newsletter 74
09/07/13
Raw Power

Newsletter 73
02/07/13
The Evolution of the Tracker

Newsletter 72
02/07/13
An Open Letter to the Honourable Edna Molewa, Minister of Water Affairs and Environmental Affairs

Newsletter 71
06/06/13
Using flash or spotlight on cats at night

Newsletter 70
14/05/13
Mirror mirror on the wall, who has the best eyesight of them all?

Newsletter 69
12/04/13
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fastest of them all?

Newsletter 68
25/03/13
Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the best fighter of them all?

Newsletters 67
07/03/13
Wild Cheetah return to the Free State after 100 years

Newsletter 66
28/02/13
Seeking the genes

Newsletters 65
06/02/13
Corbett's Journey

Newsletters 64
22/01/13
In Search of a Mate

Newsletters 63
11/01/13
Rumble in the Jungle

Newsletters 62
30/10/12
Voronin Big Cat Safari Breaks All Records

Newsletters 61
09/12/12
A Journey to Nowhere

Newsletter 60
03/10/12
The John Hume Approach

Newsletter 59
28/09/12
Response to Rhino Horn Auction

Newsletters 58
24/09/12
A Letter to John Hume, SA biggest Rhino Breeder

Newsletters 57
05/09/12
Newsletters 56
01/08/12
Indian Government -
the wrong decision

Newsletter 55
11/07/12
What price must beauty pay?

Newsletter 54
21/04/12
Corbett's Freedom

Newsletter 53
15/04/12
Lethal injection or Freedom

Newsletters 52
04/04/12
The anatomy of an aggressive tiger

Newsletters 51
14/02/12
Majestic, breathtaking pictures

Newsletters 50
04/11/11
Tigress Calendar

Newsletters 49
19/11/11

Let your pictures do the talking

Newsletters 48
26/09/11

Rhino Wars

Newsletters 47
06/09/11
A Letter to the President

Newsletters 46
08/08/11
The Body Parts Scam

Newsletters 45
11/07/11
Tiger Subspecies

Newsletters 43
01/05/11
Your future and the Tiger

Newsletter 42
08/05/11
Talk to Me

Newsletter 41
26/01/11
Gaian Reminder

Newsletter 40
18/11/10
Ron's Journey

Newsletter 39
20/10/10
"Descreprimate"

Newsletter 38
06/09/10
Beauty comes at a price

Newsletter 37
18/08/10

The Light Has Gone Out


Newsletter 36
08/07/10
The Beautiful Game

Newsletter 35
05/07/10
The Ethics of
Tiger Green Hunting

Newsletter 34
21/06/10
Tiger Hunt

Newsletter 33
26/05/10
The Year of the Tiger

Newsletter 32
11/02/10

Riding the Tiger


Newsletter 31
24/01/10

Runti's Journey


Newsletter 30
12/01/10

To intervene or not to intervene -
that is the question...

Newsletter 29
07/12/09

Lion - Tiger - Human Communication


Newsletter 28
12/11/09

Emotional humans, emotional cats


Newsletter 27
03/11/09

Julie gives birth to 5 tiger cubs


Newsletter 26
24/09/09

International Tiger Day


Newsletter 25
17/08/09

To all Photographers


Newsletter 24
16/07/09

A Shot in Anger


Newsletter 22
24/04/09


Newsletter 21
24/03/09


Newsletter 19
14/01/09

Tiger Birth
at Tiger Canyons


Newsletter 16
10/10/08

Tiger Courting


Newsletter 11
29/01/08

Privatizing the Tiger


Newsletter 9
27/10/07

Newsletter 8
28/09/07

Newsletter 7
14/09/07

Water Cats


Newsletter 6
14/08/07

Tiger Intelligence


Newsletter 5
16/05/07

Tiger language
Tiger Boma


Newsletter 3
09/03/07

Interspecies communication


Newsletter 2
06/02/07

Cub relocation


Londolozi
Newsletters

Death of a Legend
17/08/09


Newsletter 20
10/02/09

Newsletter 15
17/08/08

Painted Wolves


Newsletter 13
11/04/08

Response to Elephant Trust
by Daryl Balfour


Newsletter 12
09/04/08

Elephant Trust