Indigenous software deployed for tiger census

'Huli,' developed by Forest department helps consolidation of data

Indigenous software  deployed for tiger census

The tiger census in Karnataka has gone hi-tech with the Forest department making use of indigenously developed “Huli” software for the exercise. 

The counting began at the Bandipur Tiger Reserve, Malemahadeshwara and Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuaries in the district on Wednesday.

The department has developed ‘Huli’ software exclusively to ensure protection for the big cats. The software helps in coordinating the movements of anti-poaching squad, forest observers and guards, with the help of global positioning system (GPS). The monitoring authorities sitting in their office could easily detect the location of the field staff. 

This technology has been recognised by the National Tiger Conservation Authority and is now being used for the tiger census. None of the 41 tiger reserves spread over 17 states in the country has developed this kind of system.

The software has been installed in cell phones and tablets given to the volunteers taking part in the census.

Two forms to enter data

The enumerators have been given two forms to enter data. Information on pugmarks, claw marks and scat will be recorded in one form and the details pertaining to carnivores will be noted down in another. All these data will be simultaneously entered into ‘Huli’ software also. “This helps us in consolidating the census data,” S S Lingaraja, Forest Conservator and Director of BRT Tiger Reserve, said. 

He said the volunteers will also have to record information on vultures, which are on the verge of extinction.

“Egyptian vultures, red-headed vultures and white-backed vultures have been sighted in the BRT Tiger Reserve range. However, they are fast disappearing. A separate form has been given to enumerators to record data on vultures,” he said.

Dilipkumar Das, Chief Conservator of Forests, Chamarajanagar Circle, said, 45 “line transects” have been identified in the BRT Reserve and the Malemahadeshwara Wildlife Sanctuary each, and 45 in the Cauvery Sanctuary. A total of 124 volunteers are taking part in the census, he said.

The census is being conducted in a 2,638-sq km area of Chamarajnagar forest. Carnivores will be enumerated from December 18 to 20 while herbivores will be counted from December 21 to 23.

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