Ustad T 24 Tiger at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve
Tigress Machhali at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve

For the last so many years the air in the Prime Zone no 3 of the Ranthambore jungle was full of the stories of the legends such as Machhali ( T- 16 )and her daughters namely Sundari (T- 17 ), Krishna ( T- 19 ), Ustad (T- 24 ) and Star male (T- 28)

Nature lovers who had been venturing into the park still search for them as they are not able to come out of old memories as they are still live in their mind and soul.

The Queen of the lake Machhali left this park on 18th August 2016 to the heavenly abode but she has left a big legacy in terms of her many off springs. She ruled the prime area around lakes for a number of years and she taught her off springs how to kill a crocodile. At present the lake area is controlled by her grand daughter Arrowhead T- 85 (daughter of Krishna T- 19 from the second litter ). My son Bharat Goel could take some good pictures on 12th of May as he was allotted the zone no 3 and the tigress had passed very close to the vehicle. Another female is her sister namely lightening T 83 .

Courtship of T 28 (Star male ) and T 19( krishna) at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve
Ustad T 24 Tiger at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve

T 24 the male tiger which ruled the zone no 2,3 and 4 and was one of the most visible tiger of the park not only to the visitors to the park but also to the general public who visited to have darshan of Trinetra Lord Ganesha at the top of the Ranthambore Fort. A number of times he was seen resting next to the main and only approach road going to the famous fort. Now Tiger T 57 has taken over the territory of Ustad. He is also the life partner of tigress Noor T 39.He is known for his aggression ,fearfullness and expansionist nature. One can say he is the most dominant male in the prime zone. At present Noor is having 3 cubs of about 8 to 9 months.

T 57 the tiger at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve
T 84 Tigress known as Arrowhead at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve
T 85 known as Pacman at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve
T 39 Noor tigress with her family at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve

For all practical purposes the dominant male who ruled over the most prime area of the RTR was star male T 28.Now he has been thrown out of his area by his son namely PACKMAN T 85 . We were lucky to observe his presence on the very first day of our visit on 10th May. He is the son of T 28 ( Star male ) and T 19(Krishna ).He was born in 2014 and seen in March of that year. He is from the lineage of the lady of the lake namely Machhali, the most photographed tigress in the world. We can say that he is the grandson of Machhali.

I remember clearly that on 25th may 2009 we were fortunate to observe the courtship of T 19 and T 28 on the main route in the Nalghati. The image has left ever lasting impression on my heart and soul.

Enjoy the present Kings and Queens of the Prime Zone which every tourist likes to visit.

About Vinod Goel

He joined Customs & Central Excise service in 1982. As a civil servant, his job takes him to various parts of India, which gave him an opportunity to capture our wild heritage, through his camera. His passion for wildlife photography started in 2004 when he was posted at Raipur (Chhattisgarh) and this passion continues till today.