Jumbo trouble for foresters (India)
By Express News Service
10th March 2013
Officials of Anamalai Tiger Reserve (ATR) on Saturday announced that five teams had been formed to prevent a wild male elephant, which was in musth, from entering tribal settlements in the Pollachi forest range.
The elephant had killed three female elephants in the past few weeks. The carcass of a 20-year-old female elephant was found with multiple injuries, in Maniyancholai forest in Pothamadai beat, in Pollachi on February 26.
Officials believe that the same tusker had also killed a 20-year-old female jumbo and its five-month-old calf in Pothamadai on March 7. Officials are of the opinion that the tusker has been in musth for about a month and was probably aggressive over failure to mate.
The five teams comprise 35 personnel from the anti-poaching watchers, forest guards, forest watchers and foresters. Three teams have been deployed at Pothamadai and the rest to the Ayirangal beat. The teams burst crackers and burn fires to prevent wild elephants from entering tribal settlements in Sarkarpathy, Thammampathy and Saralapathy. Officials of ATR also asked for assistance in case tranquillisers have to be used to subdue the elephant. Wildlife veterinary officer N S Manoharan, attached to the Coimbatore Circle, is expected to arrive in Pollachi on Sunday.
Nanjan and Pari, both Kumki elephants in Chadivayal, cannot be roped in for the drive as they too are in musth. Kumki elephants at Kozhikkamuthy and Chinnar tribal settlements in Topslip also cannot be used as they have not been trained for such operations.