The state forest department is forming a team with its counterpart in Tamil Nadu to keep a check on forest fires, poaching and man-elephant conflict.
This was one of the outcomes at the joint forest management meeting held on February 21. This was the first meeting held focusing on Banneghatta National Park and Hosur in Tamil Nadu. Members from A Rocha, an NGO, were also a part of the meeting.
The agenda of the meeting was to ensure that there is better coordination in mitigating man-elephant conflict, forest fire and create an elephant corridor. The areas are important because it houses around 500 elephants in a landscape of 800 sqkm.
“The role of the special team will not only be to give alerts, but also to nab poachers. There have been many instances where the hunt has happened in BNP, but the poacher has escaped to Tamil Nadu, which is a territorial division. There have also been instances where there has been forest fire in the border areas and alerts have been sounded late,” said a forest official.
It was also decided to prepare a plan to handle the operation to drive to elephants.
"There have been instances where, Karnataka staffers have driven away elephants and they were driven away from Tamil Nadu also. During such time, the pachyderms lose their path and get into conflicts. The team will also ensure the coordination,” official said.
Encompassing a vast area, this region is abound with rich biodiversity characteristic of the Eastern Ghat landscape, which eventually forms a large complex of protected area networks (Brahmagri-Niligiri Eastern Ghats).
Over the years, the forest departments of both states have extensively worked towards securing the needs of both people and wildlife, ensuring effective management of forest resources of this landscape complex.
The current objective is a proactive step to ensure cooperative action in addressing the challenges in conservation and ensuring viability for wildlife and forests, more specifically in mitigation of man-animal conflicts in a robust manner, said Avinash from A Rocha.