A tiger in a reserve in India. Photo: iStock

A tiger killed and ate a tigress in a rare case of a territorial fight gone wrong in an Indian tiger reserve last week. In the evening on January 19, the tiger and the tigress started a territorial fight at the Kanha National Park in Madhya Pradesh province, The Times of India reported.

Forest officers on a patrol to monitor elephants found the remains of the tigress. Field Director L Krishnamurthy said the park had an abundant supply of prey for tigers to hunt and eat, which was likely the reason for the fight being territorial.

According to experts, cannibalism among tigers is very rare and even when it happens, it is never meant to be for sustenance. Instead, it was an extension of the fight.

Also, the increasing tiger population in reserves was leading to internal conflicts and more territorial fights. Madhya Pradesh was declared a Tiger State in 1995 when it housed almost 10% of the global tiger population.

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