Andhra Pradesh

Over 50 wild elephants on prowl in Palamaner range

A herd of wild elephants on prowl along forest fringe hamlets of Palamaner range in Chittoor district.  

Forest officials of Chittoor West division are on alert following the presence of three herds comprising more than 50 elephants in Palamaner range in the last couple of days.

A 20-member herd returned to the forest fringe village of Kothigutta on Friday night, hours after the electrocution of a female elephant. To add to the woes of the forested hamlets of Palamaner range, the herd found its way once again on Saturday morning, forcing the elephant-trackers to drive it back into the forests. Two more herds are reported to be moving in the same range.

Divisional Forest Officer (Chittoor West) S. Ravi Shankar told The Hindu that it had become very tough to manage the crowds close to the raging herds. He said a village youth had a miraculous escape from a charging jumbo at Kothigutta village on Friday night.

A big group of villagers, mostly youth, had converged at the forest fringe area to have a look at the wild jumbos. A youth tried to venture close to the herd to take selfie, but had to run for his life after a jumbo went after him. Receiving moderate injuries after tripping on the ground, the youth was rushed to the area hospital and his condition is said to be out of danger.

“At present, the concentration of the wild elephants in large numbers has led to fear among the farmers as they are currently engaged to the hectic field activity for the kharif season. Though there is sufficient fodder and water inside the forests, the pachyderms are getting attracted to the sugarcane, paddy and tomato crops. We have advised farmers to abandon night vigil and move in groups, besides avoiding wearing white-coloured clothes,” the DFO said.

The efforts of the forest watchers and elephant trackers to drive the herds into the forests were getting delayed owing to the presence of calves. Mr Ravi Shankar said there were close to a dozen calves sighted in the herds.

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Printable version | Jul 26, 2021 1:57:17 AM |

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