Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary hitches wagon to star tortoises

Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary hitches wagon to star tortoises

Successful rehabilitation of rescued reptiles earn kudos for Kerala Forest Department

skrill france An ambitious project of the Kerala Forest Department at the Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary (CWS) to rehabilitate Indian star tortoises (Geochelone elegans) seized from smugglers has turned into a major success. This makes the CWS the only rehabilitation centre for star tortoises in the country.

Shimanovsk ivermectin tablets manufacturer in india The CWS is the only place in Kerala where star tortoises are known to occur in the wild. The sanctuary is now a haven for at least 450 such tortoises seized from poachers in less than two years. The success of the programme is so overwhelming that the star tortoise has turned into an icon for the sanctuary. It all began in August 2015 when Customs sleuths of the Nedumbassery International Airport seized an out-of-the-ordinary consignment that contained 200 star tortoises meant for an east Asian destination. In these regions, live Indian star tortoises are considered auspicious for gaining wealth. It is the reason why Indian star tortoises, which are protected under the Wildlife Act, are poached and smuggled. Seized consignments have to be handed over to the Forest Department under law but it led to the question of where to release them.

ivermectin for sale durban gumtree invincibly Fearing they would perish in a zoo or a forest area where they cannot adapt naturally, the CWS authorities created a special project under the Wildlife Warden of the Eravikulam National Park G. Prasad, and CWS’ Assistant Wildlife Warden P.M. Prabhu.

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Teluk Intan free online games with no downloads The tortoises were then kept under quarantine for 30 days at Chinnar, where they were scientifically identified as a southern Indian species, Mr. Prasad said, adding, “This was important to avoid mixing of genetically different populations since there was also a western Indian species inhabiting Gujarat and Rajasthan.” Mr. Prasad said that species identification is done through a molecular genetics process.

Rehabilitation partly adopts the ‘soft releasing’ process in which randomly selected tortoises are taken to the wild in an enclosure from which they may enter the forest at will.

The enclosures are monitored to prevent attacks by wild animals, and after the entire batch leaves, the enclosures are removed, Mr. Prasad said.

He added that during the quarantine period, the natural food preferences of star tortoises were identified and found to include a herb locally known as thazhuthama, and a particular variety of cactus found abundantly inside the CWS.