108 wild animals including nine rhinos have died during floods in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park and Tiger Reserve. The authorities are actively working to help as many animals as possible. Recently, an exhausted rhino who strayed on the national Highway was provided cover by the local administration and forest department.
The authorities issued a bulletin on Sunday in which they pointed out that 85 percent area of the park is underwater at present. The park covers around 430 sq km area. There are 223 forest camps inside the park out of which 43 have been flooded, and six out of them have been vacated.
108 animals died at Kaziranga National Park and Tiger Reserve in flood-related incidents. 9 rhinos, 4 wild buffaloes, 7 wild boars, 2 swamp deers, 82 hog deers have died in the flood: Government of Assam pic.twitter.com/n6qJI1sI6t— ANI (@ANI) July 19, 2020
KNPTR officials have confirmed that most of the deaths occurred in the last few days during floods are because of drowning. They have found the carcass of a female rhino on Saturday that died because of drowning in the central range of the park.
60 out of 108 animals that have died lost their lives due to drowning. These animals include 36 hog deer, eight rhinos, three wild buffalo, one python, seven wild boar, two swamp deer, one Sambar and two porcupines. Authorities informed that 15 hog deers died in accidents with vehicles on national highway 37 adjoining to the park. They were trying to cross the highway in an attempt to escape floodwaters.
Fifteen animals who were rescued by the authorities died during treatment at the Centre for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC) that is located close to the park. 51 animals have been injured due to the floods and one got injured after being hit by a speeding vehicle. The forest officials have rescued 134 animals so far. 110 have already been released into the wild. Eight other animals, including a one-year-old female rhino calf, are getting treatment at CWRC.
P Sivakumar, director KNPTR said, “The animal was exhausted as it was in the water for 3-4 day and we were planning to shift it to the state zoo in Guwahati. But after resting for several hours, it moved back inside. We are keeping a watch on it.” A rhino was found strayed out of the park on Saturday on NH37. The police and forest personnel guarded the animal until it got back on the feet and moved back to the park on Sunday morning.
A rhino have strayed out near bandar dhubi area at Bagori Range yesterday and taking rest near NH37. The DRIVE OUT Operation is being carried out to guide the rhino to park. Our staffs along with @nagaonpolice are guarding the area. Drive Slow.@ParimalSuklaba1 @RandeepHooda pic.twitter.com/3avQXbqtHF— Kaziranga National Park & Tiger Reserve (@kaziranga_) July 18, 2020
Annual floods hit Kaziranga which is the most significant habitat of one-horned rhinos. There are 2,400 rhinos and 121 tigers in the National Park. Last year, 200 animals died during the floods including 18 rhinos.