Karnataka will get its first wildlife sanctuary for chinkaras (Indian Gazelle) at Yadahalli in Bagalkot district.
The government, in its notification, said the sanctuary is spread over 9,636.91 hectares in villages of Bilagi and Mudhol taluks. The region has a lot of wildlife significance since it is the only habitat for endangered Indian Gazelles.
The forests with beautiful mosaic of shrubs, grasslands and rocky patches are the habitat for critically endangered wolves, jackals, wildcats, stripped hyenas, and a variety of other mammals, reptiles and birds, the notification said. The area has numerous seasonal nalas, which drain into river Krishna in the north and into the Ghataprabha on the southern side of the sanctuary. “It acts as an important catchment for the two rivers,” it said. The sanctuary does not cover patta lands and revenue lands.
M.R. Desai, Honorary Wildlife Warden of Bagalkot, said the notification now provides a complete legal backing for habitat improvement of the region as well as ensuring the population of the endangered chinkara population remains on the upswing.
“This is a shrub forest that has seen some damage owing to plantations. For the past two years, we have tried to halt these activities. A sanctuary status will ensure that the commercial exploitation of the region stops,” he said.