The Cyclone Yaas that barrelled through coastal Odisha triggering damage of varying degrees spared Bhitarkanika National Park and adjoining hamlets in Kendrapara district with its luxuriant mangrove cover acting as a protective barrier against Nature's fury.
An official said that the mangrove forest has withstood the wind velocity of the cyclone yet again. The region has witnessed seven major cyclones in the past two decades including Yaas.
Each time, the cyclonic storm has not impacted the national park and the nearby human habitations, said Divisional Forest Officer, Rajnagar Mangrove (wildlife) Forest Division, Bikash Ranjan Dash. The villages on the periphery of the national park were saved as the mangrove cover acted as a buffer zone in protecting the human settlements, Dash said.