Reigning over some of Ranthambhore’s most beautiful landscapes, Sitara exerts his dominance with authority and brute strength. Today, at the prime of his life, he has laid claim to the rich hunting grounds around the park's legendary lakes, packed with fast food and young tigresses’ to bear his offspring.

His rise to power meant challenging long-time residents of the territory, including his venerated great-grandmother Machali and pushing her to the edges of this territory. He then mated with both her youngest daughters, Sundari and Unnis.

Keeping such a large home range, with fertile tigresses, is a tough job. Will he be able to maintain his edge in the coming season?

See the Life Stories tab for more, and follow Sitara's story on Tiger Nation

Age: 13 years old (adult)
Name Meaning: 'Star' in Hindi
Code: T28
First seen: January 2008
Gender: Male
Notable marks: Five-point star over left eye, and a bird-shaped marking over the right

Sitara's story began in early 2006, when a female from Gilai Sagar known as T27 gave birth to a litter of two male cubs. Their father was called 'X-male’ (because so little was known about him), but he was the most dominant tiger of the entire National Park. The two brothers spent their early years in the north-east area of the park, out-of bounds for visitors, and with few motorable tracks. So little is known about their early years.

He was first seen in the tourism zone during the early winter of 2008, around Berda, and is now one of the few dominant males of the National Park. His present territory includes Nalghati, Jhalara, almost the entire Mandoop plateau, Lakkarda and the three major lakes, where he's often seen by visitors.

His territory overlaps that of Machali (his great grandmother), and her two daughters Sundari and Unnis. In the cold crisp days of winter 2009, Sitara and Machali had a series of massive fights, which Sitara won every time. Slowly, Machali recognized Sitara's right to reign, and they made their peace.

Today, they give each other a wide berth. Sitara had finally won the right to mate with both of Machali’s daughters, Satara and Unnis. This resulted in Unnis giving birth to three cubs that were born in March of 2011.

Will he hold onto his territory for much longer? Who will he have to fight to remain? Follow Sitara, and his young tigresses, on Tiger Nation

14 Apr 2013 Tiger diary about 6 years ago

Unnis plays the field by Yadvendra Singh

Distributing her favours, Unnis is playing a clever, yet often, dangerous game. Like her sister before her she faces the same conundrum. Two proud males dominate the terr...

Tiger: Unnis

Reserve: Ranthambhore, Rajasthan

Thanks for answering my question. I think Unnis will deal with & cope with the situation bettter than her sister did. I'm just not sure how she'll cope when her sister returns.

tigerfan | about 6 years ago

Yes correct. It is safe and such matings common. Recent reseach suggested the gene pool is more resilient than first thought and still good in India's overall tiger population

julianmatthews | about 6 years ago

If Dollars dad is Jumaroo, does that make Machali, Dollars grandma? If so, giving that Unnis is Machalis daughter, would it be safe for Dollar & Unnis to mate, in terms of the cubs being healthy, given they share the same genetic gene pool.

tigerfan | about 6 years ago

Lets hope that she can deal with these two males more succesfully than her sister was able to.

julianmatthews | about 6 years ago

22 Mar 2013 Tiger diary about 6 years ago

Not on my patch by Vipul Jain

Machali ain’t going to give up her ‘meals on a rope’ for anybody, including the big brute of a tiger Sitara. Her Lakarda lair, a rocky valley of the ancient Aravelli hills, i...

Tiger: Machali

Reserve: Ranthambhore, Rajasthan

I'm so pleased to learn that Machali is alive & well. I have seen 3 amazing documentaries about her and she was the first tiger i looked for when i joined tiger nation. Stay strong machali so we can continue to follow you on you adventures.

tigerfan | about 6 years ago

I seem to remember Machli from the television series Land of the Tiger with Valmak Thapar some years ago. It was a wonderful series.

margaretmavor | about 6 years ago

Good old Machli. What a feisty old lady she is. Reports like this put a smile on your face, especially after the sad news earlier this week of the young tigress who died suddenly.

blackberry04 | about 6 years ago

01 Feb 2013 Tiger diary over 6 years ago

A Star has Fallen ; Sitara retreats by Yadvendra Singh

Sitara, meaning 'Star' in Hindi, is nervous. The simmering tensions over the last few months with his major rival Dollar (T25)  is having its effect. Dollar appears to have w...

Tiger: Sitara

Reserve: Ranthambhore, Rajasthan

12 Jan 2013 Tiger diary over 6 years ago

Don't push your luck Sitara by Bobby Bhargava

Recovering his monstrous ego after a mauling from the feisty tigress Satra, after a heated domestic over her cubs two weeks ago, he is now back on the offensive after his inj...

Tiger: Sitara

Reserve: Ranthambhore, Rajasthan

10 Jun 2012 Tiger diary almost 7 years ago

The art of wild supremacy by Hemraj Meena

Sitara was on the prowl today around the Rajbagh lake, one of the last green oases in the park at this time of year. He was feeling a little hungry, but ambush cover is in ve...

Tiger: Sitara

Reserve: Ranthambhore, Rajasthan

This is Ranthambore at its best and what I remember most about this beautiful park, the lake!

KayTiwari | almost 7 years ago


Photo-icon Photos: 32

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29 Jan 2016 Photo was added over 3 years ago


T-28 Star male spotted on 26th January around 10 am at zone 3. He apparently was feeding on a sambhar along with T-19 and had come to cool himself a bit later

Mini_user_default Uploaded by anthonymalik73  

28 Dec 2015 Photo was added over 3 years ago


Sitara (Tigress). She is a sub adult at 2yrs. Daughter of Choti Tara.

Mini_user_default Uploaded by ArunPrasad  

03 Apr 2015 Photo was added about 4 years ago


Up, close and a bit too close for comfort and camera!!! T28 aka Star male surprises all by getting too close to vehicles. least bothered of our presence he marches on. Spotted in zone 4 of park

Mini_738024_10151374187512744_288717336_o Uploaded by Sushil Chikane  

Very very beautiful ..

ameyatarde | about 4 years ago

Thank you

Sushil_Chikane | about 4 years ago

Beautiful photo Sushil.

Kshitij | about 4 years ago

03 Mar 2015 Photo was added about 4 years ago


T28 Sitara - in a 'flehmen' while checking out a rival's markings on the outskirts of Malik Talao. This grimace is used to draw in scents to their Jacobson's organ to identify.

Mini_10906282_10155100859850637_3134710016448513454_n Uploaded by Shashanka  

True... Amazing guy!

Kshitij | about 4 years ago

Just look how tall and how huge he is against the tree. This male, along with a few others in Ranth, have unbeatable shoulder heights among all Indian tigers.

leminh | about 4 years ago

27 Oct 2014 Photo was added over 4 years ago


Sitara or T28...the 'Star' Male in zone 2 - and Unnis's (T19) protector.

Mini_fb_img_1530774360561 Uploaded by Yadvendra Singh  

Is there any information available on who X-Male's parents are?

Aishwarya | over 4 years ago

Vijay, is Sitara's father Jhumaroo(T-20) or is it X-male(T-2)? The 'Life Stories' section on Sitara's profile says his father is X-male.

Kshitij | over 4 years ago

Sitara details updated. Thank you

julianmatthews | over 4 years ago

Thanks Vijayarajan - did you get my facebook email. I would like you to help us update the tiger profiles - plesae give me your contact details.

julianmatthews | over 4 years ago

Julian, could you kindly make corrections to Sitara's profile please ? His mother is listed as "unknown" while his father is listed as "Mallu" of Bandhavgarh ! Sitara is the son of Jhumaroo (T-20) & the late Gilai Sagar Tigress (T-27).

Vijayarajan | over 4 years ago

T19 is roaming in Star male's territory...So...he is "The" father of those 3....

yadvendra | over 4 years ago

So, is it safe to say that he's the father of Unnis's cubs then? Because a while back, am I right in thinking that we were not sure who the father was because she had been seen with 2 different males

tigerfan | over 4 years ago

17 Sep 2014 Photo was added over 4 years ago


The main man - T24 or Dollar - Very interesting behavior of regurgitating "fur ball" after i guess a good meal!

Mini_sp1_024 Uploaded by Satish Pradhan  

I remember to have read about such behavior long long back. Writer's name Aditimohan Raychaudhuri, area around Orissa, AP border, period around and just after WWII. I myself saw a big male tiger munching on a green bush in North Bengal and practically demolish it down to the stems. This tigers do to help in digesting meat, especially the day after a heavy meal. Yes a buffalo was taken from the Lepcha basti the previous night and almost half of it was devoured.

PinakiRoy52 | over 4 years ago

Wow... hearing such behaviour for the first time. The behavior mentioned by Kay must have been interesting to watch too.

Kshitij | over 4 years ago

Oops ! sorry guys (Admin please correct this) this is T 24 not T 28 !! Satish

SatishPradhan | over 4 years ago

Some different mood..lovelycaptured

Hemant.Masurkar | over 4 years ago

Lovely behavior captured.

vipinsharma | over 4 years ago

nice it's T24 btw

micah.charlery | over 4 years ago

Nice one. Saw this once when a young tiger ate piglets and regurgitated the hooves!

KayTiwari | over 4 years ago

I know the feeling! It used to be often when I travelled around India !!

julianmatthews | over 4 years ago

09 Feb 2014 Photo was added over 5 years ago


Sitara or Star Male. Back by the Malik lake after a long time. I think he spent two months in Lahpur area. Was growling because sub adults of T19 still here

Mini_img_7418 Uploaded by Bobby Bhargava  

He has a full belly there!!

sachin | over 5 years ago

Missing Entry partial

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