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Friday, June 15, 2012

3 nabbed with tiger cub pelt

TNN | Jun 15, 2012, 11.57AM IST MYSORE: A six-month-old tiger cub has fallen prey to poachers, and is suspected to have been killed at BRT Wildlife Sanctuary, a tiger reserve in Chamarajnagar, bordering Tamil Nadu. The poaching came to light following the arrest of three persons who were netted by a forest department vigilance squad posing as prospective buyers. They were arrested at Siddiahapura near Chamarajnagar and the tiger pelt and bones recovered from them. The officials are trying to locate where the cub was killed. Sources told TOI that the cub may have been killed three days ago, given the freshness of the pelt. "How it died is yet to be ascertained as there are no bullet marks on the pelt. It could have been poisoned too," the sources stated. The officials are sending the pelt and bones to the Bangalore-based National Centre for Biological Studies for further examination. The gender of the cub could not be ascertained from the pelt but said it could be a female. The three arrested are Mahadev from Boodipadaga, Mahesh from Kullur and Narayan from Coimbatore, while two others escaped. This is second case of poaching reported from tiger reserves in the Mysore-Kodagu-Chamarajnagar region. A tiger was killed in mid-February near Kushalnagar in the buffer zone of Nagarahole National Park, which came to light on April 7, after forest officials arrested one person at Naviluru in Periyapatna taluk in Mysore district. He later told police that they killed the tiger when they went hunting for deer and came across the big cat, and shot it. Attn: Mysore Desk/Political Desk This is story related to seizure of tiger pelt outside BR Hills tiger reserve in Chamarajnagar. This is second incident in recent times when the tiger pelt is seized in the area.

Cops trap man trying to sell tiger skin at Porvorim

TNN | Jun 15, 2012, 11.18AM IST Mapusa: In a well-planned operation Porvorim police arrested one Sanjay Pawar for carrying a tiger skin on Thursday afternoon. Police suspect the skin to be that of a full-grown tiger. The skin will be sent for analysis to wildlife institute of India (WII), Dehradun. "This is done for legal purposes," a forest officer said. Police were tipped off around noon that a person would arrive in Porvorim in a blue car with a tiger skin to be sold. Accordingly Porvorim DySP Bossuet Silva and PI CL Patil formed two teams, including a decoy, to trap the seller. Police said that at about 12.30pm Pawar, holding a white polythene bag arrived at Porvorim and was waiting for the prospective customer. He was immediately surrounded by police and searched. "The skin of a full grown tiger was found in the polythene bag which has been seized. The car has also been attached," Silva said. He added that it was not a fresh skin, but an old and cured skin. Analysis by WII will help ascertain its age. From P 1 Pawar, presently residing at Pilerne, is originally from Sawantwadi, Maharashtra. He was arrested under Section 51 of Wildlife Protection Act and handed over to range forest officer at Campal for further action. Police said Sawantwadi police have been informed and Pawar's house was searched but no other skins found. PSI Vikram Naik, constables Shyam Mahale, Satish Sawant and Melvyn Cardozo were part of the operation. Mapusa based NGO Pratistha aided police in the operation. NGO president Deepak Gadekar said he provided information to police in the operation. The skin, sealed in the presence of witnesses, will be analyzed for various aspects. Investigations are in progress.

Corbett reserve faces a host of intractable problems

June 15, 2012 By Rashme Sehgal Correspondent Corbett National Park (uttarakhand) Corbett Tiger Reserve may boast of the world’s highest density of tigers but it is beset by a host of problems that may soon see it lose its premier status. CTR’s director Rajan Mishra admits that CTR has witnessed an intensification of man-animal conflict with as many as eight humans being killed by a man-eater in 2010. One of the main reasons for this conflict is the massive construction of hotels and luxury villas blocking of the entire eastern boundary with only two passages available for wildlife to approach the Kosi river. Joseph Vattakaven, tiger coordinator for WWF-India pointed out that tigers are constantly spilling over outside tiger reserves and presently 13 tigers are using the Kosi river corridor to cross over to the Ramnagar forests. The WWF has employed 86 traps on either side of this corridor which show the corridor is being used by several animals, including elephants. CTR’s other problems relate to the removal of the villages of Chukam and Sunderbhal which are cutting off the animals access to the Ramnagar forests. The problem is that although these villages are not located in core tiger habitat, the National Tiger Conservation Authority realises only too well that the buffer area is also rich in wildlife. “The entire Sunderkhal area, comprising a 10-km stretch, has been encroached upon and presently has 144 families living there. Former environment minister Jairam Ramesh had made an exception and agreed to grant compensation of `10 lakh per family even though they were not in the core area,” said Mr Mishra. “Removing the villages of Chukam is an easier task since they are inside a territorial division of a tiger reserve area,” Mr Mishra explained. But though villagers from both these villages are clamouring to be relocated, the NTCA has yet to act on the ground. Another major problem facing CTR is that stone and sand quarry is no longer restricted to the Kosi river but is being done in stretches of the Ramganga river as well.

Maharashtra denotifies 1/4th of Koyna sanctuary land

TNN | Jun 15, 2012, 04.55AM IST MUMBAI: The National Wildlife Board has approved the denotification of nearly 100 sq km of the Koyna Wildlife Sanctuary. Residents of 14 villages will now be able to cultivate their fields without any fear of action from the forest department. The sanctuary created in the 1970s is spread over 423 sq km. The area that has been denotified is private forest land and has always been cultivated. Pravin Pardesi, principal secretary, revenue and forests, said the land, which is a part of the Deccan plateau, is on one side of the Koyna lake while the larger and actual forest is on the opposite side along the Sahyadri range. The forest is in layers and is a rain forest. It is home to a large number of birds that are endemic to this forest. There are tigers, barking deer, bison, wild dogs and other animals as well. Union minister of environment and forests Jayanti Natarajan, while allowing the denotification, said it was being done on the condition that the state would develop new forest areas. The state government pointed out that recently, it had declared five new protected areas in Vidarbha. "Also, eight villages in the core forest area are being shifted out. The 100 sq km of land thus freed will be used for forest development,'' said Pardesi. Sanctuaries to have successfully done this before are Kanha in Madhya Pradesh and Ranthambore in Rajasthan. Maharashtra has been witnessing a spurt in poaching and man-animal conflict as its tiger population has soared in comparison to the protected areas, which has halved ever since the government denotified 7,000 sq km of he Nanaj Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary last year.