Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve (Umaria) has come up with an action plan for the conservation of wild elephants that strayed into the reserve from the nearby Chhattisgarh state and made it their permanent home. It was way back in 2018 that elephants came from Chhattisgarh to Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve (BTR) and since then their population is on the rise. As of now, the population of wild elephants is more than 50 inside the reserve. Probably, no other national park other than Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve houses as many wild elephants.
“We have prepared an action plan for protection and conservation of wild elephants and sent it to the state government. This action plan is awaiting approval,” said the field director of Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve Rajiv Mishra talking to Free Press. As of now, a herd of wild elephants is moving in Tala, Magdi areas of the tiger reserve.
Another officer of Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve said that the action plan envisages a long term perspective of eight to ten years. It emphasizes avoiding the elephant and human conflict and in this regard, it advocates for awareness among the villagers living around the reserve.
Action plan recommends that villagers should be advised not to remain inside the jungle for a long time while collecting Mhua and other forest produces. Likewise, villagers needed to be made aware that they should not go near the elephant as they would react instantly. The plan advocates coexistence of elephants and humans following certain check points. For instance, villagers should not light fire inside the jungle as this makes elephants run towards the villages. When the fields are having the crops, elephant herds try to move towards the villages.
Apart from this, Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve officials are also trying to follow the elephants by placing camera traps at various locations.
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