The life of wild buffaloes at the CNP is threatened, animals are disappearing for lack of suitable habitat

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The life of wild buffaloes at the CNP is threatened, animals are disappearing for lack of suitable habitat

Wild buffalo. Photo: NTNC

CHITWAN: The survival of wild water buffaloes in Chitwan National Park is threatened by the lack of suitable habitat.

A total of 15 wild buffaloes were brought here about five years ago from Koshitappu Wildlife Reserve and Kathmandu Central Zoo in an effort to increase its population.

Twelve of these animals were transferred from Koshitappu Wildlife Sanctuary while three were brought from the Central Zoo.

Two open habitats have been built in the Purano Padampur area along the Chitwan National Park to keep the animals.

According to CNP conservation officer Haribhadra Acharya, 10 animals, including six males and four females, have died since mid-July this year.

A natural disaster was a major threat to the animal’s life as it was responsible for the deaths of five animals in 2074 BS. Likewise, the animal continues to fall prey to tigers.

One was devoured by the big cat in 2074 BS. Also this year, more than six animals died from flooding and tiger attacks.
The first calf was born on August 18, 2018.

As conservation manager Acharya said, the animal could only fight against its enemies in a larger group. At least a herd of 50 animals is needed to defend against a tiger attack.

“The number of existing animals is too small, which is why the CNP was unable to release them into the open.”

As he said, the animal struggles to adapt to the environment here. In Koshitappu, they drank fresh water from the Koshi River. Artificial habitats with artificial ponds and pastures do not appear to be suitable for animals. The animal is disappearing for lack of suitable habitat and fodder, he said.

CNP senior veterinarian Dr Bijay Kumar Shrestha said pneumonia was diagnosed in recently deceased animals. This may be due to the impact of flooding in habitats. The CNP said the cause of death would be determined after further testing on samples of dead animals.

(Narayan Adhikari / RSS)


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