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Number of elephants up in Koshi Tappu



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By Our Correspondent

Gaighat, Nov. 13: Number of elephants has been increasing in Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve.
After an elephant named Sarswatikali gave birth to a baby elephant on Monday morning, the number of elephants in this reserve has reached eight.
Prakash Narayan Chaudhary, Chief of the elephant stable of the reserve, said, “After Dandanikali and Shovakali gave birth to Ushakali and Koshikali two months ago, the number of calves and mother had increased to three and five respectively.”
Lakshmikali and Amrikakali are also pregnant, he said.
Along with increasing number of elephants in the reserve, fodder scarcity is increasing as the supplies have to be shared among more animals.
The reserve was initially established to protect water buffaloes (Arna), deer and birds, but unclaimed and feral cattle also reside in the reserve in large number. This has led to shortage of fodders for the elephants, said Chaudhary.
Because of the domestic elephants kept in the reserve, wild male elephants coming from other places have been entering the village and affecting lives of people in Belaka Municipality-1 and 2 of Udayapur district.
As the wild elephants destroy houses and farmlands, we have been terrified, said Dineshwor Chaudhary, Ward Chair, Belaka Municipality-1.
On October 20, Agamlal Chaudhary, a local, was seriously injured after a wild elephant attacked him, said Ward Chair Chaudhary. The locals of Belaka Municipality stay up throughout the night to guard the farmlands from the attacks of wild elephants, he added.
Chaudhary said that they had asked the reserve to shift the elephant stable.
Uma Subedi, a local, said, “Establishment of elephant stable near the village has threatened our lives as the children and seniors cannot even run when the elephants charge.”
Chaudhary said that it was impossible to stop the attack of wild elephants only through the initiative of local level.
“When we complained about the elephant attack, the reserve officials said that the stables had already been shifted and the locals were being attacked by the elephants coming from Assam of India,” said Chaudhary.
The locals said that the State and Federal governments must come up with effective measures to save them and their households from the attacks of elephants.