T-25 Dollar

Dollar, as the name given to this male tiger owing to the $ (Dollar) shape on his right flank stripe pattern has really amazed the tiger lovers. The story of Dollar is very interesting and is the most peculiar character in Ranthambore. First of all, his majestic appearance in front of the visitors; and once the reputation goes, he particularly does not enjoy the human presence and chases the vehicles out of rage if he is not in the mood to interact with them.

Preferably, T-25 has marked his territory far in the forest and due to the ferocity with which he tries to usurp the territory of other tigers; is also being called Zalim (in Hindi that means grievous). People have found him chasing the vehicles, growling and ready to attack.

Being typical of the nature of a male tiger, Dollar's behavior and territorial aggression remained consistent but his recent behavior has really amazed everyone. From last year, Dollar has been found with two female cubs who were orphaned last February (2011) when their mother T-5 succumbed to intestinal illness and died in the hilly Kachida region at the northwest corner of the reserve. T-25 surprisingly is not only protecting these cubs but also playing the role of mother to these two. That's quite amazing to the male tiger's nature who otherwise commonly seen as a threat to the cubs. Over the last year, he has turned quite softer too and is hardly 'Zalim' any longer, the name that he acquired a couple of years ago by the observers.

Born in 2007 or 2008, Dollar was one of the three male cubs born to the Lahpur-Nagditigress T-22 and father Jhumroo (T-20) and is the direct descendent of Ranthambore's matriarch- Machali. Initially, Dollar was thought to be a tigress and as a sub-adult hardly one or two of his pictures were available, when he separated from his mother. His two brothers Indala and Sultanpur flourished in the rich hunting grounds of Nagdi-Lahpur, which was the famous territory of Jhumroo, their father for many years.

After few months of close monitoring by the forest officials, it was thereby confirmed that the T-25 is indeed a male tiger. From that day he was always remembered for his snarls and roars and so he gained the name 'Zalim'. But today when people observe him with his two adopted cubs, his movements revealed that he is not stalking them but patrolling his territory and amazingly training his cubs. As an obedient child, the cubs are also seen to follow him and sniffing the territorial markings of other tigers. This extraordinary family has always delighted the visitors with their regular affectionate and caring moves towards each other across the tourism zones.

The most surprising element of Dollar is that he is also being protecting and accompanying the female cubs as potential mates. Dollar once mated with Sundari (his sibling) in November last year who had her three cubs with T-28; since incest was common in territorial cats when male and female siblings are separated from their mother.

Today, Dollar still shows his hazy behavior whether due to his fatherly love or sexual instinct; his natural or unnatural motives have raised question when Bina 1 and Bina 2 (the two adopted cubs) showed different behavior towards him. Where Bina 2 showed her unwillingness towards Dollar's authority, although she stays around; but on the contrary Bina 1 follows him like a shadow, stays close, plays, even sleeps near him. Bina 2 keeps to herself and is more dominating with having a mind of her own.