Soon camera surveillance in Ghumsara reserve forest division

Berhampur: Camera traps will be installed in different vulnerable reserve forest of Ghumsura North forest division in Ganjam district, a senior forest official said today.

The department took the decision after a leopard was killed in Tarsingi forest range recently.

“The camera trap will not only capture movement of animals but will also help forest personnel catch poachers and smugglers”, said state’s Wildlife Warden S.S. Srivastav.

“Wildlife officials are now identifying the vulnerable reserve forests and the number of camera traps required”, said Srivastav who was on a visit to Tarasingi.

He also visited Chandragiri reserve forest under Tarsingi range to inquire into the alleged poaching of leopard recently.

An eight-year-old male leopard was shot dead by poachers on Tuesday night in the first such case of leopard poaching in the reserve forest, the warden said.

Forest officials subsequently arrested three poachers, seized the animal’s hide, a country made gun, knife, and three cellphones from them.

“We have now decided to install two camera traps in each forest range”, said DFO (Ghumsura-North) Ramswamy P.

Around Rs 2.5 lakh would be spent on installation of cameras and the work will be completed by this month end.

“Forest officials wil check images captured by the camera every day,” he said.

The forest department will also increase patrolling, particularly during night, when the poachers were very active.

“Poaching of a leopard is a serious issue”, he said.

He also stressed repair of VHF sets.

“Though forest guards have mobile telephone sets for communication, cellphones do not function in several areas due to network problem. The VHP sets play a vital role in communication,” he said.