The majestic walk of the Royal Bengal tiger has stopped us every time, we get on the discovery channel while flipping to another channel. The fiery eyes tell a story- A story of struggle, fight, determination, aggression, tact, and agility. Nothing misses a tiger’s eye. Nothing! Its razor’s sharp vision can cut through many traps laid out for it.
The tiger has a special place in history and a few religions in India. Mount to the mother goddess Durga, it is a symbol of bravery and agility in Hinduism. Even the Goddess earned the moniker ‘Sherawali’ owing to her majestic mount.
On this International Tiger’s Day 2022, I want to pay homage to Machchli-the former matriarch of the Ranthambhore jungles, who single-handedly fought a 12 feet long crocodile to protect her cubs. An inspiring tale of bravery and motherhood, that will leave one astounded.
The tigress was named ‘Machchli’- a Hindi word for fish, owing to the fish-shaped mark on her cheek. Beautiful and majestic in her appearance, wildlife photographers all over the world were besotted with this lithe big cat. Unsurprisingly, she caught international attention and became the ‘World’s most photographed tiger’.
To her credit, she is also the Oldest living Tiger in the world. Machchli gave birth to about 11 cubs throughout her lifespan, which helped to increase tiger population in the country with the Indian government earning commendable tourist revenue owing to Machchli’s progeny. (Source: Wikipedia)
Machchli was a ferocious tigress and an equally loving mother. When a 12 feet long crocodile tried to hunt her cubs down for food, she attacked him with all her might. This was an incredible fight as she single-handedly defeated the large reptile and even lost two canines in the fight. Machchli’s progeny is said to have restored the glory of the Ranthambhore National park. (Source: Wikipedia)
In 2016, Machchli died of old age. Though one of the most celebrated animals in the world, she was absolutely oblivious to her fame. All she knew was to be a tiger. And that’s exactly what she did, wowing the world in the process.