Jim Corbett National Park
This is a collection of articles archived for the excellence of their content.
Animal attacks on the park’s staff
Ramesh Negi, (35), a forest guard, died after being attacked by a tiger while patrolling the Plane range of Corbett Tiger Reserve’s Kalagarh division. This is the second such attack in the same range in the past few months — a forest beat-watcher was mauled to death on July 15 — and the third death of a frontline worker in Corbett this year. The reserve has lost more than a dozen forest officials in the past 19 years to such attacks, reports Shivani Azad.
Corbett authorities plan to seek National Tiger Conservation Authority’s permission to tranquilise the wild cat involved in the latest incident and radio collar it to monitor its behaviour.
2015: canine diseases, 17,000 dogs in buffer zone
The Times of India Jan 01 2016
The thriving big cat population at the Jim Cor bett National Park might be a showpiece for successful con servation, but the famous wildlife sanctuary's tigers and leopards might be at risk from canine diseases from 17,000 odd dogs living in villages in the 5km buffer zone.
A first-of-its-kind survey of wildlife habitats in India conducted by Humane Society International, India, a leading animal rights group, found most of the dogs were unvacci nated and are possible prey for felines who spill out of the core areas of the sanctuary .
Though dogs are not natu ral diet for tigers, the interface with areas populated by humans makes them vulnerable.However, dogs are a prey for the leopards who often raid villages and isolated dwellings looking for an easy meal. The survey makes a case for immediate vaccination of around 13,000 dogs which might infect the big cats with diseases that are not found in the wild. The survey of dog population is considered the best means of determining the vaccination gap and prevent canine diseases from transferring to felines.
Amit Chaudhari, who led the team in conducting the survey around the Jim Corbett National Park in October, told TOI that vaccinations are a preventive action.
“The majority of dogs in the buffer zone are owned by the villagers. There are many instances wherein the dogs are snatched away by the big cats. Largely unaware of these infections and the vaccinations for them, the villagers have not given jabs to these dogs,“ Chaudhari said. Research shows tigers and leopards in such sanctuaries are at risk from canine diseases like rabies, parvo and distemper, all viruses that can be transferred from canine to feline. Vaccination is also important to protect humans and prevent reprisals against the canines.There have been instances where people killed dogs around Ranthambore national park in Rajasthan, fearing spread of diseases in the area.
The HSI is currently preparing a proposal for the NTCA on how to take the project to the next phase of vaccination by running a pilot project that can be then extended to other national parks. “The vaccination drive will not on ly create a healthy habitat for the wildlife but also for the humans inhabiting these areas, making it a first of its kind project in India“, said the HSI while disclosing basic details of the survey .
Rahul Sehgal, director of HSI, Asia, said, “This survey is the first step towards the `Free Roaming Dog Population Program' that will help in further protecting the dogs and the wildlife habitat. After the survey , we now wish to vaccinate the dogs and identify if any are already infected.“
2021: 350 species
The first phase of the Corbett Tiger Reserve’s (CTR’s) first-ever bird survey has documented over 350 species spread across the region. The three-day first phase which concluded this week has identified 11 types of woodpeckers along with five species of barbets and five types of parakeet, among many other species of birds.
It is estimated that Corbett has around 500 bird species. However, no official survey has been done as yet to document the exact number of bird species in the reserve. Speaking to TOI, Shah Belal, senior wildlife biologist at CTR, said the three-day survey reiterated that there is little to be concerned about the Great Hornbill species whose numbers were believed to be decreasing. “The birds indicate the health of a forest. Till now, it was believed that there are around 500 bird species here but we now estimate that the number is much higher. We have also found Great Hornbills in several habitats which allay the fear that their numbers are decreasing,” he said.
The survey was undertaken by 26 teams, each with a bird expert. Belal said the next two phases of the survey will be conducted after the monsoons and during winters to document migratory birds.
2017> 19: a decline in numbers
The Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR) and Rajaji National Park (RNP), the two premier tiger habitats in Uttarakhand have registered a marginal dip in tourist footfall this year which officials say is the first time this has happened in the past four years.
While 2.84 lakh tourists visited CTR and 61,507 came to RNP in 2017-18, footfall in the two national parks declined to 2.83 lakh and 55,091 respectively in 2018-19. The decline in numbers, albeit marginal, has led officials to search for possible reasons with some attributing the dip to the Uttarakhand HC orders of limiting the number of vehicles entering the parks and ban on night stay (which was later relaxed by SC). Citing possible reasons for the decline in footfall, officiating director of CTR Sanjiv Chaturvedi said, “Following HC order, the Bijrani zone of the reserve opened a week later than usual. This can be a possible reason behind the decline in footfall.”
This year, too, Bijrani zone remained centre of attraction in CTR with highest tourist footfall (57,061), followed by Jhirna zone (37,000). In Rajaji, Chilla zone saw most number of tourists this year at 24,895, followed by Motichur zone (4,000). This year, while 7,760 foreigners visited CTR, RNP saw 4,339 foreign tourists. Rajaji director PK Patro told TOI, “There has been a marginal decline in tourist footfall which can be attributed to various reasons, including legal directions limiting entry of vehicles to parks and ban on night stay.”
Ferried by tankers in summer
The Times of India, Jun 06 2016
Vineet Upadhyay According to estimates, almost 1.5 lakh litres of water is being procured every day to fill up more than 100 water holes in the park. “Although procuring water has been a regular practice more or less every summer, this year, the dry spell was too long. Hence, our requirement is huge and we have had to get additional water for the animals,“ park director Sameer Sinha told TOI.
The exercise started in April with the onset of summer but as temperatures have risen, the quantum of water being bought has also gone up. According to officials, every day , 35-40 tankers arrive at the park, each carrying 4,000 litres of water. This is then filled in the water holes either manually or with pump sets.
“This is serious. The soaring temperatures have resulted in a situation where we have had to increasingly depend on supplied water to meet the requirements of the animals,“ said Saket Badola, deputy director of the park.