Monday, June 13, 2022

Conserving tiger corridors a key step' ; Other news on forest ,wildlife, and forest fire published in the Pioneer (2019-2021)


32 elephants found during census in B'ngir

Saturday, 03 June 2017 | PNS | BALANGIR

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A total of 32 elephants were found in the Balangir Forest Division during the four-day Elephant Census-2017 which was carried out from May 9 to 12.

According to forest office sources, out of the 32 elephants, there are five adult males (tuskers), 20 females, four sub-adults and three calves.

While 31 elephants were sighted in the Salebhata section of the loisingha Forest Range, only one was spotted in the larambha section of the Patnagarh Forest Range.

The elephants were sighted at Gajar Munda (a big water body) near Nuniapali and Kesipali village under the Salebhata section and larambha beat in the Patnagarh Forest Range.

A total of 25 Machans had been erected in the Balangir, loisingha, Deogaon, Patnagarh and lathore Forest Ranges for the elephant census.

DFO Rashmi Ranjan Nayak, ACF Goutam Naik, Honourary Wildlife Warden Sudhir Mishra; loisingha Range Officer Nabin Das and Forester Sunil Mishra coordinated and monitored the census.





Calf born in jumbo herd on prowl in B’ngir

Tuesday, 26 November 2019 | PNS | BALANGIR

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0The residents of Upperjhar and nearby villages in Balangir forest range who have been facing an elephant menace and suffering crop loss due to damages caused by a pachyderm herd for last 15days woke up to a news of birth of a baby elephant in the herd. At around 3.30 am, the baby elephant was born in Upperjhar forest.

“Our forest staff noticed the baby elephant on Monday morning. After the birth of baby, the herd took it inside the forest. Our staff are keeping a tab on the movement of elephants there,” said Divisional Forest Officer, Balangir, Sameer Satpathy.

There are around 12 elephants, including the newborn, in the herd, which has been staying in the Upperjhar forest area over last fortnight. As there is a dense forest and water bodies like Muda and a minor irrigation project inside the forest, the elephants are finding the spot ideal. They are also getting enough of paddy crop and sugarcane cultivated in nearby areas.  



‘Turn B'ngir waterfalls into eco-tourism spots'

Friday, 13 December 2019 | SUDHIR MISHRA | BALANGIR

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On the occasion of the International Day of Mountains, villagers of Sagadghat have demanded that the two natural waterfalls, Kadalijharan and Aam Jharan, in the Barnei mountain,in Titilagarh Forest Range,65km from here, be developed as ecotourism spots.

The Sagadghat villagers,led by Sarpanch Olita Sahu,  appraised their demand to Balangir Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Sameer Satpathy,who visited the spot on Wednesday. The DFO urged the villagers to protect forest and mountain and assured them to take necessary measures in this regard.

There are two mountain streams, namely Kadalijharan and Aam Jharan.While Aam Jharan (stream) is at the top,the Kadalijharan is at the bottom of the mountain. Besides this ,there are numerous jharans (stream) in the Burni mountain.

Earlier a sage was living here.There were large numbers of mango and banana trees. One would get plenty to eat.

There is a belief going on that anybody who brought fruits  from the top of the moutain would find them turn stone after reaching the foot of the hill.

Moreover, the mountain stream water is believed to contain medicinal properties and bathing there is beneficial. There is a Shiva Linga in the mountain which appeared to have  come up naturally.


Elephant kills woman in Balangir

Sunday, 12 April 2020 | PNS | BALANGIR

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An elephant trampled a 90-year-old woman to death after destroying a house at Hanupali village under Khaprakhol block in Balangir district late on Friday night.

The deceased was identified as Belamati Bariha.

The tusker strayed into the village and destroyed the house belonging to Srimukha Bariha. Earlier, the elephant had also eaten paddy and other food articles stored in the house.

Although Srimukha managed to flee from the house, his mother Belamati failed to come out and fell victim to the elephant attack.

Belamati was rushed to the CHC in Khaprakhol and later was shifted to the Patnagarh Sub-Divisional Hospital, where she was declared dead.



Narasingha urges people to plant trees

Wednesday, 08 July 2020 | PNS | BALANGIR

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Local MLA and Congress Legislature Party Leader Narasingha Mishra on Tuesday called upon people to plant more trees to protect environment and meet climate change challenges.

He was speaking at a Bana Mahotsav at Khamarmunda organised by the Balangir Forest Range. He planted an Amla tree on the occasion.

He stressed the need to plant locally-suited and medicinal plants like Bahada, Arjuna and Amla trees.

DFO Sameer Satpathy claimed that forest cover in the district has increased. He said a plantation programme would be undertaken to plant trees on a four-km stretch of National Highway divider beginning from the Balongir Collectorate. Assistant Conservator of Forest BC Roul briefed about the Bana Mohotsav. Social distancing and other Covid norms were followed.


Conserving tiger corridors a key step'

Tuesday, 01 September 2020 | PNS | BALANGIR

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Corridor conservation requires much attention for tiger conservation in India and at the same time  transborder conservation especially with Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh should also get priority, observed former  Member Secretary, National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) Anup Nayak at a Webinar.

The discussion was on future of tiger conservation in India, organised by Stripes and Green Earth [SAGE] Foundation, Kolkata on Sunday evening and attended by conservationist, wildlife enthusiasts, researchers from Bangladesh, Kenya, Canada and from different parts of India including West Bengal, Odisha, Rajasthan  and Madhya Pradesh 

Nayak also said about importance of conservation of  30 per cent tigers outside protected areas which is key a step in tiger conservation by Involving local people, NGOs etc.

A few years ago, an amendment on NTCA protocol was made on hiring private hunters/shooters to eliminate problematic tigers.

A study is going on this issue, replied Nayak to a question by  Dr Jaswinder Sandhu From Canada on rewinding white tigers and saving their gene pools.


Jumbo scare grips B’ngir villages

Monday, 14 September 2020 | PNS | BALANGIR

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Even as the soaring Covid-19 positive cases continue to heighten worries of the people and administration in the district, in forests of Athgaon and Upparjhar villages, a herd of 14 elephants has been on the move and damaging paddy crop, increasing the ordeal of farmers further.

The elephants on Thursday night came to the villages and damaged crop.  “We had cultivated paddy crop with much difficulty in the lockdown situation.

Last year, we got very low amount of compensation.

With the present loss due to the elephant menace, we have been hit badly.” said a farmer of Phatamunda village.  “We are keeping a tab on the movement of jumbos,” said a forest official.


Cycle rally in B’ngir to sensitise people on forest fire

Thursday, 18 March 2021 | PNS | BALANGIR

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·         With a view to sensitising villagers on forest fire and its prevention, a bicycle rally was flagged off by retired professor Madhusudan Pati on Wednesday. Participated by students, youths, social workers, journalists and staffs of the Forest Department including the local Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), the rally marched through the town and then a meeting was held at village Gandhrel, which witnessed forest fire recently.

Village women, youths and members of the Vana Surakshya Samiti participated in the programme. They were told how forest fire occurs and how it could be prevented. The speakers included Hemanta Panda, Bolangir DFO Sameer Satpathy, Birendra Jhankar, Sudhir Mishra, among many others. Responding to a point mentioned by Balangir Block Chairman Golap Bag, DFO Satpathy announced that the Vana Surakshya Samti (VSS) of Phuljharan village would get the incentive announced by the Government for checking and recording zero occurrence of forest fire in their forest.

VSS members of Gandhrel would also get torchlights which would help them climb down from the mountain after dousing the forest fire in night, Satpathy said.All those present in the meeting took a pledge to check occurrence of forest fire and save the forests.



8 deer die in 3 days at Harishankar Park

Thursday, 05 August 2021 | SUDHIR MISHRA | BALANGIR

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As many as eight spotted deer have died due to suspected infection at the Harishankar Deer Park in last three days. On August 1, six deer died while two more perished in the next two days.

This has dismayed animal lovers here.Alarmed at this development, a team of veterinary doctors from Bhubaneswar visited the deer park on Tuesday and collected samples for further examination. According to sources, the death of the deer was due to a sudden drop in temperature and infighting among the animals.  However the other deer are responding to the treatment given by the veterinarians and the  situation is under control.Balangir Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Nitish Kumar, who visited the park on Tuesday along with the veterinary doctors told the local official to keep three deer in isolation and assured to take further steps to remove the problem of space constraints.

The exact cause of the death of deer would be known only after a laboratory test report is received, said the DFO to this correspondent over phone.


Jumbo kills man, injures another in Balangir

Saturday, 18 September 2021 | SUDHIR MISHRA | BALANGIR

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In an unfortunate incident, an elephant killed one Yadav Rana (45) of village Brahmani under the Harishankar Forest Range in Balangir district on Thursday night.

The jumbo, after coming to the village at around 9 pm, began damaging Rana’s house. When Rana came out of the house, the elephant killed him on the spot. The elephant stayed at the village overnight and attacked another person, Tarani Bhoi (35) on Friday morning leaving him seriously injured.

Harishankar Range Officer Sribatsa Kumura said, “getting information, we reached the spot in the morning and facilitated shifting of  injured person to the Khapraphol medical for treatment.” Since last two days, the elephant was moving in Chabripali, Bhanupali and adjoining villages eating paddy crop. “We believe the elephant has come from the Padampur side of Bargarh district and we are keeping a watch on its movement. The jumbo is now inside the forest near a village of Gandhmardan forest,” said Kumura to this correspondent over phone. Balangir Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Nitish Kumar said, “We have initiated the compensation-giving process; and by today evening, Rs 40,000 (10 ten percent of the total amount) would be given to the deceased’s family; and we would complete the payment of compensation within a fortnight.”


Balangir DFO wins Green Warrior Award

Tuesday, 26 October 2021 | PNS | BALANGIR

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Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), Balangir, Nitish Kumar was given the “Green Warrior”honour this year by the NatWest Group India at Earth Heroes Awards on October 20 through virtual mode. Institutionalised in 2011, the NatWest Group Earth Heroes Award in its 11th year, is a national initiative that recognises efforts of individuals and institutions across India who are working tirelessly to subvert climate change by conserving and preserving the rich biodiversity of the country for a better relationship between the society and nature. As many as eight winners were felicitated via a virtual ceremony that was graced by the chief guest Secretary-General, Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), UNIvonne Higuero. Nitish Kumar who  joined the Odisha Forest Service in 2014 as an Assistant Conservator of Forests (ACF) was  known for his valuable contributions towards afforestation, infrastructure development, enforcement (protection), and converting technology into conservation outcomes in the Kalahandi North Division. Besides his work extensively on soil and moisture conservation to improve wildlife habitat of the Kalahandi North Division was widely appreciated. From 2018 to 2020,  he was instrumental in formulating Fire Control Rapid Response team in the area as forest fires are a major cause of wildlife habitat degradation in the Kalahandi North Division. Nitish Kumar was also the first to introduce drone technology in the Odisha Forest Departmen


Farmer killed in jumbo attack in Balangir

Tuesday, 30 November 2021 | PNS | BALANGIR

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A person was killed in an elephant attack at Bhalupali village under the Loisingha Forest Range in Balangir district on Monday morning.

The deceased was identified as Gopal Podh (40), who had gone to his paddy field when he was attacked by a jumbo.

For the last three days, a herd of 35 elephants have strayed into the area and are destroying crops at night.

The death of villager sparked tension in the village and people manhandled the frontline forest staffs, though they tried their best to drive away the herd.

“The death of the villager in the elephant attack is unfortunate..We have already released 10 per cent of the compensation to deceased’s family and the rest amount would be given after the necessary official process said Balangir DFO Nitish Kumar.

“We have already started the process to install high-mast lights in the affeceted area and I appeal people to cooperate with frontline staffs in handling the situation,” Kumar said.








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