Return of the tigers brings both joy and fear

September 11, 2022
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“There are two feelings when you come head to head with a tiger,” says Captain Ayush Jung Bahadur Rana, part of a unit tasked with protecting the big cats.

“Oh my God, what a majestic creature. And the other is, oh my God, am I dead?”

He now often sees Bengal tigers on the armed patrols he carries out across the open plains and dense bush of Bardiya, the largest and most undisturbed national park in Nepal’s Terai region.

“Being assigned to tiger protection duties is an honour. It’s a privilege to be part of something that is really big,” Capt Ayush says as he glances around through the thick forest.

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