On the 22nd of June 2016, the male tiger
Seatao was found dead in the bush at Tiger Canyons. There
were no visible injuries on Seatao and no signs of a
fight. It appears that Seatao died of natural causes, he was
10 years old.
Seatao came to me as a 3 weeks old cub.
The breeder who bred Seatao, never told me that he was a
carrier of the rare white gene. (Seatao’s father was a white
tiger and his mother was a normal tigress.)
Seatao came with a female cub called
Shadow (DNA profiling later proved Seatao and Shadow were
I named him by merging my two boys names
Sean and Tao = Seatao. As I walked with Seatao and swam in
dams, two things became apparent, Seatao had a very nice
nature and secondly he was going to be big, very big!
One day I took Shadow and Seatao down to
the Wilderness to show to the pupils at Hoekwil school.
(Sean and Tao went to Hoekwil.) On the way down I was
stopped in a roadblock to inspect my vehicle. (The license
had expired.) While the traffic inspector was inspecting my
truck, Seatao began to give a distress call in the back. The
traffic officer asked me what was crying in the truck and I
replied “A tiger”.
Not believing me, the traffic officer
opened the back of the truck and out jumped Seatao. This
sent the traffic officers scattering in all directions.
Having assured them that he was only a cub, all the traffic
officers posed for pictures with Seatao (The traffic
officers used their speed camera to take the pictures.)
After the photo shoot and having given
each officer a DVD copy of “Living with Tigers”, I went on
my way (The traffic officers forgot to fine me for having an
expired motor vehicle license.)
When I arrived in the Wilderness, I put
Seatao and Shadow in a box in the bedroom where I was
staying. Seatao cried so hard that I took him in to my bed.
Here he regained his confidence immediately, took a short
cat nap and then he and Shadow proceeded to destroy the
Unlike Ron and Julie who I had hunted
with for 4 years, Seatao and Shadow had their own boma
stocked with game. Seatao became a very good hunter,
although he mostly pirated the kills from Shadow.
One day Shadow killed two blesbuck. The
first one Seatao pirated, the second Shadow hid in a pool of
water. Seatao followed the drag and then using his feet,
located the kill in the water. Seatao dragged the blesbuck
to where he had left the first kill. Here he proceeded to
eat both blesbuck and never shared with Shadow.
On one occasion, I witnessed Seatao and
Shadow co-operating in a hunt. The two tigers surrounded a
Cape Clawless Otter in a pool. The otter was too quick for
the tigers to catch. Seatao walked out of the pool and
positioned himself on the top of the bank above the pool.
Shadow maneuvered the otter to a position beneath Seatao.
With a dramatic leap, Seatao dropped onto the unsuspecting
otter, killing it with a bite to the neck.
Ron my original tiger who came from
Bowmansville Zoo in Canada, was in one large area and Seatao
was in another area.
Dividing the 2 male tigers, was an
electric fence with an automatic gate which worked on remote
control. One day the gate opened on the remote and then
closed and then reopened. Ron moved through the open gate
and into Seatao’s area. I knew I must prepare for the
“Rumble in the Jungle”.
I have filmed male lions fighting. It is
nothing compared to male tigers. Although only 3 years old
and up against a more experienced fighter, Seatao eventually
had Ron down and was throttling him. Determined not to let
Seatao kill Ron, I fired shots into the ground next to the
fighting tigers. Fortunately they separated and I was able
to get Ron back to his area. (Ron had not been in a
vehicle for four years, yet I was able to load him and take
Five years later Ron was killed in a
territorial fight. Seatao found the body and attacked it for
20 minutes. Seatao picked up Ron clean off the ground and
shook him like a rag doll. (I estimated Ron’s weight at 200
I remember vividly when attempting to
weigh Seatao, it took 12 strong men to get him onto the
scale. Seatao tipped the scale at 229 kg.
Seatao readily jumped onto the bonnet of
the Mahindra vehicles. One could physically feel the vehicle
sag under Seatao’s weight.
Many guests at Tiger Canyons were sprayed
with marking fluid as Seatao marked his territory. One lady
from the USA admitted to me that the highlight of her trip
was being sprayed on by Seatao.
Seatao was the most productive of all
breeding tigers at Tiger Canyons. He fathered Julie's second
litter. (This litter consisting of Sundarban, Shine and
Zaria was abandoned at birth.) Seatao fathered Julie's third
litter which consisted of Indira, Ussuri, Tibo, Mahindra and
Runti (Runti died 12 weeks after birth.)
Shadows second litter consisting of Oria
and Ardene, were also fathered by Seatao. Seatao bred the
first white tiger, Shine, and the second, Vivienne Tiger
Seatao’s death was a shock to me. He was
10 years old, his teeth were in good condition. I suspect,
although the vets tell me otherwise, that every time a tiger
is darted, it lessens their life. Seatao was darted twice in
his life, once when I weighed him and once when I
Seatao’s death opens up opportunities for
the young male Khumba, who will be moved into Seatao’s
territory (Khumba is not related to any tiger at Tiger
Canyons and is therefore extremely valuable.)
the "Tiger Maneater Hunter" described a male tiger as a
wholehearted gentleman and indeed this is what Seatao was.
His size was awesome, his nature was
gentle. I estimated that a half a million images decorate
the walls of houses in over 50 countries. I myself shot
several hard drives of Seatao.
Picture: Yvette van Bommel
Seatao's death is as painful as
Shingalana and Tigress Julie. I will mourn him deeply, he enriched
my life greatly.
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Three tigers have had transponders
fitted. The operation is extremely invasive. If anyone has
another method other than a collar to fit a transponder, will
they please contact me.
Thank you to Doctors Gavin and Charmaine
Rous and to Lesley Rous for extremely professional
Thank you to Emma Wypkema, Margaret Pang,
Jos and Yvette van Bommel, Andrea and Michael
Brand, Rama and Shankar Kulkarni, Isis Builders, Scot and
Pat Kaufman, Vivien and Michael Jones who each sponsored a
Opening the Olympic Games With an Animal
Commentary by Captain Paul Watson
The Olympics have certainly degenerated
over the last few decades. The incredible waste of money and
resources has been obscene. The last such Olympic spectacle
in 2012 celebrated industry with top hat wearing cigar
smoking British businessmen strutting about the stadium in
London, and that was extremely bizarre to say the least.
And now we have these silly games in Rio
where tourists are being robbed on the street in daylight,
where mosquitos are buzzing around carrying the Zika virus
and machines are spewing pesticides onto the street while
people are having lunch and coughing amidst toxic fumes in
the outdoor cafes.
All the Russians and the Kenyans have
been banned because some Russians and Kenyans have been
allegedly doping. The alternative would be to test them in
Brazil prior to competing instead of banning the greatest
runners and track athletes in the world. Winning a gold
medal in the marathon without competing against the Kenyans
would seem to me to be a shallow victory with the winner
never ever to be sure that he or she was the indeed the
fastest or just the winner by virtue of exclusion of the
Kenyans and the Russians.
These expensive games are being held in
the midst of poverty in a nation that is murdering
indigenous people, destroying the rainforests and building
mega dams and huge mining operations that are poisoning the
rivers and wiping out vast areas of flora and fauna.
Just last week a group of indigenous
Guarani Kiowa were viciously attacked, killing one and
wounding five others by a group of loggers supported by the
military, There were no arrests and no arrests are
This is a nation that over the last year
saw more than fifty environmental activists murdered for
protecting rainforests, many of whom were indigenous peoples
making Brazil the most dangerous nation on the planet for
So it was most appropriate that they
launch the games by killing an iconic symbol of the
rainforest - a jaguar.
The killing of the jaguar symbolizes the
Brazilian government's complete and utter contempt for
nature, wildlife, and the rights of indigenous peoples. It
symbolizes humanity's forced superiority over other species
as it hosts an extravagant display of commercialization of
sports in a orgy of political competitiveness for national
And it will be even worst in 2020 when
they hold this international charade of a "united" humanity
in Tokyo where the very groundwater will be radioactive, in
a nation that illegally butchers dolphins and slaughters
whales in contempt of the International Court of Justice.
The Japanese will most assuredly be
peddling their whale burgers and dolphin steaks at Olympic
concession stands to illustrate the obscenity they call
their "food culture." And of course the "fans" will be eager
to consume the forbidden food just for the thrill of
thumbing their nose at conservationists just like they do
now when they dine on whale steaks in Greenland, Iceland and
The killing of this jaguar was a
disgraceful representation of what the Olympics is all about
- excessive materialism and patriotic chauvinism and
complete contempt for nature.
Many years ago I advocated that Olympics
be held in one place every four years and that place would
be where it all started - In Greece. As such there would be
the need for just one venue without spending billions on
facilities in impoverished nations. But of course that can't
happen because the Olympic Committee rakes in vast sums of
money from those hosting the games and the games go to those
with the best ability to "bribe" the committee. It's not
about sports, it's about money, influence and politics.
Perhaps Brazil believes that hosting the
games will absolve them of the crimes of destroying Amazonia,
of murdering indigenous peoples and environmentalists while
hosting a garish circus amidst extreme poverty.
This Olympic travesty of 2016 will be
most remembered as the farce that murdered a jaguar and as
such I could not care less who wins one of those silly gold,
silver or bronze medals. All that I will remember is a noble
animal lying in a pool of its own blood with a Brazilian
soldier standing over her with a smoking rifle.
The jaguar, a 17-year-old female named
Juma, was kept at a zoo that is part of a military base in
Manaus, the largest city in the Brazilian Amazon.
She apparently escaped an enclosure on
Monday but was not at risk of fleeing the zoo. The military
said in a statement that Juma had been tranquilized but was
shot after she moved toward a soldier, and that the action
was taken to protect a team that was trying to recapture
The jaguar, a mascot for an infantry
battalion, had appeared earlier that day at an event for the
Olympic Games this summer in Rio de Janeiro, and she was
photographed in chains alongside soldiers and a torch runner
holding a flame. The Olympic team mascot for Brazil is a
cartoon jaguar named Ginga, and an image of the animal also
appears on the emblem of the Manaus military base, where the
event took place.
The Games organizing committee said in a
statement that it had been an error “to allow the Olympic
torch, symbol of peace and unity among peoples, to be
displayed next to a chained wild animal.” The committee said
that it was “saddened by the outcome” and would not allow
similar situations during the Summer Games, to be held Aug.
5 to 21.
As news of Juma’s death spread, the
Facebook page for the Games was inundated with criticism.
The animal rights group PETA called the death “needless.”
“Wild animals held captive and forced to
do things that are frightening, sometimes painful, and
always unnatural are ticking time bombs — captivity puts
animal and human lives at risk,” PETA said in a written
Less than two months before the Olympics
begin, Brazil faces worries about whether infrastructure
will be ready, how to keep the Zika virus in check and the
continuing fallout from political turmoil that has included
the suspension of its president pending an impeachment
JV is running a big cat
Safari for 6 people in 2017. The safari is 5 days at Tiger
Canyons and 5 days at Londolozi. A yoga coach and an animal
communicator will accompany the safari. Vegetarian menu will
be served. If anyone is interested, the can contact Sunette
JV Images is proud to produce their new
song "Where will the Polar Bears go" on YouTube. A warning
that it is not for the sensitive viewers...
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