Trekking, adventure sports at JB Kaval forest soon

Proposed butterfly park near Yelahanka may start by year-end

Trekking, adventure sports at JB Kaval forest soon
You need not have to travel too long for trekking, bird watching and some adventure sports in the days to come. You can do it in north Bengaluru itself.

Forest Department is developing a part of Jarakabande Kaval (JB Kaval) state forest patch near Yelahanka as an adventure sports, trekking and butterfly park on the lines of the one at the Turahalli Reserve Forest in south Bengaluru.

Turahalli Reserve Forest sees a huge rush of nature and adventure lovers. The area is very popular among youth and children for nature trails, short trekking and bird watching. Similar facilities will now be created at JB Kaval.

A part of the JB Kaval forest patch will be converted into a butterfly park and tree park. This will be limited for sightings and trails only. This was the same place where the department had organised a nature camp using Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority funds. In the first phase, boundary walls protecting the area have been constructed on 100 acres after getting funds under Corporate Social Responsibility initiative, said Range Forest Officer Tadagani V Ganesh.

The entire forest patch is spread across 644 acres, of which 325 acres will be used for the camp area. The remaining will be protected as forest patch, not open for people. J B Kaval state forest is home to small herbivores and carnivores, including leopards. The area is ideal for bird watching and butterflies. A Detailed Project Report is being prepared. The park will be open for public by the end of December, Ganesh said.

The forest area faces threat from real estate and land mafia, dumping of garbage and construction material. By regulating tourism and developing the area, there will be proper demarcation and protection of the forest area, he said.

The idea of offering small forest patches around the city was mooted some two years ago by the then Chief Secretary Kaushik Mukkherjee and Additional Chief Secretary, Forest, Environment and Ecology Madan Gopal and Forest Minister Ramanath Rai. The aim was to reduce the rush at prime forest areas such as Bandipur and Nagarahole tiger reserves, where many go during weekends to relax, trek and photograph wildlife.
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