Kerala

Early closure of national park likely

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For calving season of Nilgiri tahr

The authorities are planning to close the Eravikulam National Park (ENP) for tourists early this month following the sighting of a newborn Nilgiri tahr calf in the park.

A park official said on Wednesday that a report was given to higher-ups and there were chances of an early closing of the ENP for tourists in view of the calving season. The park was closed by the end of January last year after a few calves were sighted by the middle of the month.

No sign

The official said there was no sign of a change in the calving season in the wake of a change in climate generally experienced in the region.

Usually the mating season is June-July, in sync with the southwest monsoon, and the calving season is from February to March. However, in view of the early sighting of calves last year, the ENP was closed early and remained shut till April. A detailed study needed to be done whether the change in climate had an impact on the calving season of the Nilgiri tahr. The official said only one calf had been sighted so far.

The Nilgiri tahr population had remained stagnant for long in the ENP with about 700 to 750 individuals. The Forest Department had conducted a survey on the migration of the Nilgiri tahr to the adjoining areas, including the proposed Neelakurinji sanctuary.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 9:10:18 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/early-closure-of-national-park-likely/article30527077.ece

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