Dogs to keep away tiger poachers in Jharkhand
December 16th, 2008 – 2:31 pm ICT by IANS
Ranchi, Dec 16 (IANS) Alarmed by the continuing killings of tigers in Jharkhand, the state forest department is planning to raise the number of dogs in its squad to keep away poachers and find missing body parts of the killed jungle cats.”The dogs will be used to keep away poachers from the tiger reserve and find the body parts of killed tigers. The poachers hide the body parts to mislead the tiger count,” Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) S.K. Sharma told IANS Tuesday.
The trained dogs will find out skins, bones and other parts of tigers from the inaccessible areas where poachers hide them.
He said the plan is still at the conceptual stage.
“We are interacting with states like Karnataka where dogs are being used similarly. There is a possibility to raise the dog squads by the next financial year,” he added.
The forest department is expected to seek help from Haryana’s National Dog Training Institute.
According to forest department officials, the National Tiger Conservation Authority wrote a letter to the state forest department stressing the need to raise the number of dogs in the squad.
The latest survey jointly conducted by the National Tiger Conservation Authority of Ministry of Environment and Forests and Wildlife Institute of India puts the total count of tigers in India around 1,500. During the 2001 and 2002 census, the total number of tigers was 3,642.