KMT reserve sees rise in big cat population
September 28, 2010
The tiger population has doubled in Kalakkad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve here compared to the number of wild cats found in the park four years ago.
As per the census carried out in February this year, there were 13 tigers in the KMTR compared to six recorded in 2006. The census showed that there were 3 males, seven females and three cubs at present.
There were also 62 panthers, 23 elephants, 100 migratory birds, 23 squirrels, 65 dotted deer, 69 bisons, 17 lion tailed macaques and 17 langurs in the reserve, KMTR Field Director and Chief Conservator of Forests H Mallesappa told reporters here yesterday.
This time forest department has used camera trap by deploying a total of 40 cameras throughout the KTMR, he said.
The Centre has allocated Rs. 1.94 crore this year for holistic development of KMTR, considered one of the delicate ecological bio-spheres in the Western Ghat range.
Utilising the fund, various measures, including setting up of anti-poaching squads, providing compensation to farmers for crop damage caused by wild animals in fringe areas of the reserve, had been taken up this year, he said.
Laying of proper roads and construction of bridges along this ecological bio—sphere, demarcating the protected reserve forests by powered fencing to prevent entry of wild animals into the farm lands were among other steps taken this year.
The fund has been provided by the National Tiger Conservation Authority, he said.
KMTR is situated in the southern most tip of the Western Ghat range, spread across the intervening borders of Tirunelveli and Kanyakumari districts adjoining Kerala.