|Poachers from Myanmar pose hurdle to tiger census
Samudra Gupta Kashyap
Indian Express, Posted online: Wed Mar 21 2012
: More than a month after the first-ever camera-trapping tiger census
was launched at the Namdapha national park in Arunachal Pradesh,
encroachers and poachers — the latter suspected to be from Myanmar —
have posed a challenge to the operations.
Namdapha, with an area
of 1985.23 sq km in Changlang district, was declared a tiger reserve in
1983. Changlang is one of the three districts that have a considerable
presence of both factions of the NSCN.
Official sources in
Itanagar said while over 80 families belonging to a particular tribal
community encroaching upon the tiger reserve have refused to move out,
miscreants, including Myanmarese poachers, have even taken away
sophisticated motion-sensitive cameras with automatic sensors that were
fitted inside the forests. In two instances since the tiger census had
begun, miscreants also fired upon census teams.
tiger census inside Namdapha is becoming a difficult task, especially
because the encroachers and poachers have joined hands to resist entry
of census and forest officials inside the reserve,” said M Firoz Ahmed,
wildlife biologist and head of a team entrusted to conduct the
camera-trapping tiger census by National Tiger Conservation Authority
(NCTA) in Namdapha.