Forest dept to help ITBP, Army manage waste on border
The Uttarakhand forest department will assist the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and the army on waste management at India-China border posts to control stray dog population and ensure conservation of high-altitude speciesUpdated: Nov 22, 2017 20:20 IST
The Uttarakhand forest department will assist the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) and the army on waste management at India-China border posts to control stray dog population and ensure conservation of high-altitude species.
Gangotri National Park (GNP), a potential site for snow leopards, shares its northeastern boundary with China. The border is secured by ITBP battalion 35 and 12, and Mahar-2, an infantry regiment.
The present waste management of the forces has led to an increase in dog population, officials said. The waste is dumped in pits, which are accessible to dogs.
“Presently, the pits are within the reach of stray dogs because of which their population is increasing. So, we have suggested fencing of the pits that will help control canine population,” Dhananjai Mohan, additional principal chief conservator of forest (APCCF), told Hindustan Times.
Forest officials, with support from Dehradun-based Wildlife Institute of India (WII), will fence the waste pits of the border forces. Mohan recently organised a meeting with the ITBP and army.
A research paper published in 2016 recorded how dogs were preying on livestock in Upper Spiti landscape of Himachal Pradesh, posing a threat to species like snow leopard. The presence of canines threatens the prey base of wild species.
Gangotri park, a protected area in the upper catchment of Bhagirathi river, spreads across 2390 sqkm. The area is covered under the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) project -- Securing Livelihoods, Conservation, Sustainable Use and Restoration of High Range Himalayan Ecosystem. Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Sikkim are also a part of the project.
A survey done in 2015 reported indirect evidence of snow leopard presence in the national park. Officials are keen on taking preventive measures to ensure protection of the species.
The central forces have agreed to support the forest department to secure data loggers, and with climate-related equipment and camera traps. They will also take forest staff and scientists during long-range patrolling to study snow leopard habitat and its population.
First Published: Nov 22, 2017 20:20 IST