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11 Dec 2017

New haven for rhinos

Rhinos at Jaldapara National Park 
Anirban Choudhury, TT, Alipurduar: The forest department has planned to develop a third habitat for rhinos at Patlakhawa in Cooch Behar to balance rhino population in the region.
The rhino habitat at Patlakhawa will be the third in Bengal after Jaldapara and Gorumara National Park, both located in north Bengal.
According to forest sources, for the last few years forest officials had been thinking of relocating one-horned rhino to a safer place because the number of rhinos has increased at both the national parks and most animals die because of infighting.
On December 17, Wild Life Day will be observed at Patlakhawa where senior forest officials will announce the 5 year project.
Ujjwal Ghosh, the chief conservator of forest wildlife north, said: "We have already received Rs 1.80 crore out of Rs 2.25 crore sanctioned for the project in the first phase. In the first two years we will erect the boundary of the habitat, grassland improvement, infrastructure development, deployment of security staff, construction of staff quarters and training of staff. The total area of the habitat is about 21sqkms."
"After completing all these works the rhinos will be relocated at Patlakhawa in the third year," he added.
Forest sources said one male and two female rhinos would be brought in at the new habitat.
Patlakhawa, a patch of forest, is located on the fringes of Jaldapara.

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