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In Kumaon region, foresters rescued 3,000 snakes in 4 years

The number shows that the forest teams rescued 2-3 snakes every day, says conservator of forests.

dehradun Updated: Nov 28, 2017 20:31 IST
Mohan Rajput 
Mohan Rajput 
Hindustan Times
Uttarakhand news,Snake rescue,Kumaon region
24 forest officials of five forest divisions were awarded on the occasion of wildlife protection week recently in Haldwani for their outstanding performance in the rescue operations.(HT File)

More than 3,000 snakes of different species have been rescued in the last four years in the Kumaon region of Uttarakhand, the forest department officials claimed.

The number shows that the forest teams rescued 2-3 snakes every day, said Parag Madhukar Dhakate, conservator of forest, Kumaon. Mostly local people inform rescue teams about the presence of snakes, he added.

He said earlier after seeing snakes people would kill them, as they posed threat to humans, but now there is change in the people’s mindset.

“Now, we see a lot of change in their (people’s) mindset, they don’t harm snakes. They inform the forest officials and wait for the rescue team. Our teams rescue and release them into nearby forests,” said Dhakate, adding that pythons and cobra top the list of snaked rescued by the forest teams.

According to the forest officials, snakes are found equally in the hilly and plain areas of the Kumaon region, but they are frequently seen in the Terai (plains). Large forest cover provides them sufficient food and shelter. Among other snake species, four types of snakes are common in the region. They are King Cobra, Indian Cobra, Krait and Russel Viper. They are of poisonous category and can potentially kill humans.

Dhakate said of the 3,000 snakes rescued by the department in the last four years, 857 snakes were of poisonous category. He said earlier the forest department did not have facility and trained staff to catch or rescue snakes, but now the department possesses trained manpower and equipment to carry out the rescue operations.

Recently, 24 forest officials of five forest divisions were awarded on the occasion of wildlife protection week in Haldwani by principal conservator of wildlife DS Khati for their outstanding performance in the rescue operations.

Dhakate said that master trainers also impart day-long snake rescue training to interested people other than foresters.

First Published: Nov 28, 2017 20:31 IST