Bhanderia, 25 March 1893

Unfortunately this was the last hunting day in Nepal!

The brave natives did their utmost to get me a tiger for the farewell. In multiple locations of the jungle bulls were bound in place and in the morning there was truly a report that in two locations there had been kills. While the camp at Katni was being dismantled in order to transfer it to Bhanderia, 10 km distant, we rushed to the first location of a kill which was just in the place where I had shot the panther the day before. According to the shikaris the confirmed tiger was the one that had killed an animal the day before and dragged it for 400 paces. This seemed to be an experienced tiger that had probably survived a hunt because, when we arrived on the spot, the shikaris reported that they had seen the tiger but failed to encircle it. Probably the tiger had escaped — that they wouldn’t admit — in a very skilful way.

As we had to look for the tiger in the direction that fled, a line was formed and a beautiful forest crossed. It was evident to order not to fire on any other animals. By chance, as always happens in such cases, we discovered a large number of the most interesting game and within close shooting distance: capital chitals, muntjacs, even timid swamp deer dared to approach close to our elephants. After a long search, the shikaris gave up their hope of finding a tiger.

Breakfast was intended to sweeten the necessary consultation. I was already on the verge of enjoying myself. But no breakfast was prepared as the people in charge of it got lost with their elephants in the jungle; after barely half an hour, the carriers of supplies arrived attracted to the correct location by the hungry and thirsty cries of our English companions, so that we could breakfast for an hour.

In the mean time the shikaris advanced with the hunting elephants to track another tiger. We followed on riding elephants, passed by the empty camping location of Katni and finally found the shikaris at the shore of a river in a high reed jungle where they had encircled not a tiger but instead a panther. We had just climbed into our haudas, when the reed moved and the panther escaped out of the ring in full flight through a spot loosely guarded by elephants, without a possibility of firing a shot in the reed.

But this didn’t perturbate the shikaris used to such events — a few commands shouted out, the circle opened, the wings spread out anew and after about 200 paces closed again, so that only a few minutes later the panther was encircled again. It tried to escape again but was stopped by a dense phalanx of elephants and fled in the opposite direction only to be shot by me.  This panther was even stronger than the one from the day before.

On the way back from hunting the panther through a thick forest, consul general Stockinger suffered a slight mishap, as he was struck so hard on the head by a falling branch that one could see the  hit’s bloodshot marks on the forehead.

In the bright moonlight we occupied the new camp at Bhanderia south of Katni.

Links

  • Location: Bhanderia, Nepal
  • ANNO – on 25.03.1893 in Austria’s newspapers.
  • The k.u.k. Hof-Burgtheater is playing „Rosenkranz und Güldenstern“, while the k.u.k. Hof-Operntheater is performing once again „Die Rantzau“.

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