Foresters recce vantage spots to capture tusker (Coimbatore, India)


Times of India

Date Published

To tranquillise and translocate a rogue tusker from the Madukkari forest range, the forest department officials inspected a few vantage points near Madukkarai on Saturday. The officials said they started the preparation work to capture the lone tusker and requested the officials of Mudhumalai and Anaimalai Tiger reserve (ATR) to send at least three kumkis to Madukkarai to capture the crop raider.

They said the lone tusker would be taken to Top Slip coming under the Anaimalai Tiger Reserve where the elephant will be kept inside a krawl (a wooden enclosure where captured wild elephants are confined for training). A few weeks later, the tusker will be trained by a mahout and a kavadi and later it will be used as a kumki.

The district forest officer (in-charge) A Periyasamy from Coimbatore forest division, Madukkarai forest range officer M Senthilkumar, forest veterinary doctor NS Manoharan and forester Sasikumar visited the reserve forest near Madukkarai on Saturday and inspected the vantage points to capture the tusker.

“The tusker has been using same pathway for a few months. We have fixed a few suitable places from where to tranquillise the elephant that is in his 20s,” said Senthilkumar, forest range officer.

The forest department has requested the district collector Archana Patnaik to conduct a meeting with heads of the all departments at the grievance day meeting on Monday to discuss the elephant capture and translocation issues.

Chadivayal elephant camp already has two kumkis. The forest department has decided to use these two kumkis during the capture. However, they also sought help from MTR and ATR to get their kumki elephants for support. “It’s too difficult to translocate a wild elephant to one place to another place in a truck. So, we will use the kumkis to put the tusker in a truck,” said Senthilkumar.

The officials will translocate the tusker to Top Slip where it will be kept at krawl. “The wild elephant will be taught to obey the instructions of the mahout during the training. Later, it will become close to the mahout and will become a kumki,” said an officer.

On June 8, the principal chief conservator of forests and chief wildlife warden had approved the translocation of the tusker allegedly involved in a series of man-animal conflicts in Madukkarai forest range.