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Elephant Census to Address Human-Elephant Conflict in Southern India

Elephant Census To Address Human Elephant Conflict In Southern India

In response to the escalating cases of human-elephant conflict in the southern part of the country, a comprehensive elephant census is scheduled to commence today, spanning three days. This initiative aims to scientifically address the issue and develop sustainable solutions, particularly in the states of Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu.

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Background of Conflict

Recent years have witnessed a significant surge in human-elephant conflicts, particularly in forested areas of these states. Incidents involving elephants encroaching into human habitats have led to numerous fatalities and accidents, including collisions with trains.

Collaborative Efforts

To address these challenges, the forest departments of Karnataka, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu have collaborated. Their joint approach seeks to implement measures to prevent such incidents and devise scientifically grounded solutions to mitigate human-elephant conflicts.

Key Areas for Census

The elephant census will be conducted in various key forest areas, including:

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  • Bandipur National Park
  • Nagarhole National Park
  • Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Malai Mahadeshwara Wildlife Sanctuary
  • BRT Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Bannerghatta National Park
  • Other regional forests in the Madikeri and Virajpet region

Additionally, the census will extend to forests in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

Methodology

Forest officials will adopt a systematic approach to conduct the census. Samples of elephant dung will be collected and analyzed to estimate the elephant population. Forest areas will be divided into blocks, with trained professionals assigned to each block for data collection. Various scientific techniques, including photography, will be utilized to facilitate accurate counting and data recording.

Data Collection and Analysis

Information on elephant age, gender, and population distribution will be meticulously recorded and digitized for future reference. Trained forest officials will exclusively undertake the census activities this year.

Objectives and Outcomes

The census aims to provide comprehensive insights into the elephant population in these regions. Data collected will inform strategies to minimize human-elephant conflicts and prevent accidents. Furthermore, it will aid experts in devising effective conservation measures to ensure the harmonious coexistence of humans and elephants in southern India.

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