The wild animals of the Nagarhole National Park, especially those of the Mathigodu range, are reeling under acute water scarcity. Incert investigation team has already recorded the death of two wild Bisons (Bos gaurus), due to acute water scarcity in the National Park
One such death occurred some 10 days ago near the Kurdnur tank, which is about 8 kms. from Billena hosalli. A herd of Bisons had arrived to quench their thirst, but were mortified to find the tank completely dry. The traumatised bison herd wandered back to the forest, leaving the exhausted individual, which ultimately died due to acute thirst and dehydration. (See photo)
Local villagers have alleged that the forest officials have drawn and disbursed large amounts towards desiltation works of several tanks, under a World Bank aided scheme; but no civil works were ever carried out, bemoaned the villagers.
Most water sources, including several small streams and rivulets have dried up within a 20 km radius in the Mathigodu range, and this has aggravated the problem, and the National Park is all set for a very rocky, waterless period till the onset of the next monsoon. The death of bisons is only a portend of the things to come this summer, not merely for the national park, but for the entire community dependent on the Cauvery river.
The wild animals have to not only brazen out themselves for an acute waterless summer, but also to blister the threat of forest fires that are likely to envelop many areas of the National park this coming summer.
Sandalwood Smugglers continue to denude the National Park
The INCERT investigation team has been recording and reporting the undiminished activities
of the Sandalwood smugglers in the National park, from time to time. Last week, INCERT Investigation team have recorded the looting of hundreds of Sandalwood trees at 1) Kerekatti, 2) Banavarakere 3) Balekatte 4) Bidarkuppe 5) Chandanagiri kadu and 6) Alur kadu, under the Mattigodu range of the National Park.The team has also noticed large scale looting of Sandalwood trees from B.R. Kaval to Hemmige and at Panchavalli, which is going on unhindered for more than a year.
INCERT investigation team have recorded the sale of Sandalwood billets hidden in plastic gunny sacks at Panchavalli, Hanagodu, B.R. Kaval and Hemmige Goudikere hamlets. The traders arrive regularly from Mysore and offer upto Rs 300/- per kilo and hide the Sandalwood billets in the scooters with a modified chamber, placed beneath the seats and transport them back to Mysore.
The Nagarhole National Park is some how loosing its magnetic hold as a prime Wildlife habitat of the Western ghats, and concommitantly, the citizens of the state especially those that are depending on Cauvery river, are slowly being forced to look elsewhere for solutions to the escalating water scarcity problem.