Belur Makhna moves back to Karnataka forest

Night patrolling has been intensified on Mananthavady-Mysore State highway that passes through tiger reserves in Karnataka

Updated - February 18, 2024 08:39 pm IST

Published - February 18, 2024 08:38 pm IST - KALPETTA

While the Kerala Forest department officials have intensified the combing operation to capture Belur Makhna, a tuskless male elephant that killed a farmer at Chaligaddha a few days ago, the elephant has moved to the nearby Bavali forest under the Nagarahole tiger reserve in Karnataka.

A signal received by the officials from the radio collar attached to the animal on Saturday night showed that it had moved to the Bavali forest under the HB Kuppa forest range in Karnataka, a Forest department official said.

As the animal was spotted nearly 500 m away from the Kerala-Karnataka border, the darting team had awaited at the Bavali forest zone anticipating its return to Kerala‘s part of the forest on Sunday morning. But the mission was temporarily halted at noon after the animal moved further into Karnataka, around 1.5 km. “However we are tracking the animal online,” the official said.

As the right side of the forest zone was adjacent to a thickly populated human habitat in Kerala, night patrolling had been intensified on the Mananthavady-Mysore State highway that passed through the tiger reserves in Karnataka, he said.

As many as 105 front-line forest staff had been deployed in the area, including a 15-member Rapid Response Team from the Bandipur tiger reserve in Karnataka with two vehicles, for night patrolling. They would patrol on 13 vehicles in the night to keep the animals away from the human habitats, he said.

Meanwhile, the officials have intensified the search for a tiger that triggered panic among residents in the Pulpally area after it reportedly killed four heads of cattle.

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