CM orders inquiry in tiger count decline in Pilibhit

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“Something like this would ring alarm bells to me, what or who is causing such a decrease in the number of tigers? If there was only 23 last year, what is the current number & where have these tigers gone. Is it poachers or hunters, the numbers are declining too fast for it to be of a natural death!! Something has to be done to find out why there is a decline in numbers & get onto it ASAP before these majestic tigers have gone for good!!!”

Keshav Agarwal,TNN | Nov 26, 2014, 10.05 PM IST

PILIBHIT: Taking cognizance of the matter related to rapid decrease in number of tigers in Pilibhit Tiger Reserve in three years, chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has decided to set up an enquiry in the matter.

Special secretary to the chief minister, GS Naveen Kumar, has referred the matter to the principal secretary of the forest department for taking further steps, MLA Hemraj Verma told TOI.

The issue was raised by the SP MLA from district Pilibhit, who had written to the chief minister in the third week of November. He had said that the forest department had counted more than 40 tigers in the forest area of Pilibhit district in 2010 and the figure had dwindled to 30 in 2012. The count had further declined to 23 in 2013, he had pointed out.

Tigers are thriving in and around India’s Nagarhole National Park, with a regional population of 250. “If we do everything right, we can have 500,” says big-cat biologist Ullas Karanth.  Read more: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/The-Fight-to-Save-the-Tiger.html#ixzz1qG95oEf7
Retired chief wildlife warden Mohammad Ahsan welcomed the move and said special emphasis should be placed on the counting of tigers also in the adjoining Surai forest range of Uttarakhand and parts of Shahjahanpur district. This would help in determining whether the tigers of Pilibhit Tiger Reserve, especially the mother big cats, have not migrated to other forest regions to find safe habitats for their cubs or in search of easy prey.

An environmentalist from Pilibhit, Parvez Hanif, said that the investigation of missing tigers in PTR would not be complete if the process of capturing foot-prints of tigers was not applied simultaneously with picture capturing method through cameras.

He observed that the method of collecting footprints of tigers, which he claimed was applicable till 2007, , can assist the investigation team reach more exact conclusions.

The vice president of Wildlife Biodiversity Conservation Society Amitabh Agnihotri said that the investigation team should find out the effects of human encroachment on the tiger population and devise ways to reduce such interference.

News Link:-http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bareilly/articleshow/45288095.cms?intenttarget=no

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29 Arrested In Arson Attack After Tiger kills Teacher In Madhya Pradesh

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“I totally understand the loss of a loved one & the fear factor that big cats are prowling around; but I hardly think burning Forest Official vehicles, is going to help the matter. If anything it will have hindered the Forest Officials from tracking the tiger!  The problem is obvious, the big cats are losing their forests & the animals they would normally pray on. I don’t think a tiger can be called a man-eater, he isn’t biased about what he eats…he just has to eat to survive! Granted humans shouldn’t be on the menu, but if there is no meat left to hunt in the wild, of course they are going to stalk areas where they see food; i.e humans! Their habitat is being cut down for wood & to grow crops or build houses; so the tigers have no way to survive…they will kill anything when hungry. I’m sure they would rather stick to their own diet of forest animals but if there are none, due to lack of habitat, what do you expect? They can’t survive on fresh air!!”

“I’m sure the Forest officers were just as shaken by the latest tragedy’s & intend on trying to find & relocate the tiger! I hope & pray they get hold of that tiger before the villagers do, because once they get into mob mode, it’s a free for all, who knows what they will do to the tiger. Perhaps burn & torture it like they did when they caught a leopard poaching on human land! However, even if the tiger is caught & relocated, I’ll bet there is another tiger, just waiting to take its place! Something radical has to be done to save both human & animals from being killed…They must stop cutting down the tigers habitat, which includes the tigers natural pray. Or use the land to build more houses & grow more crops to fulfill India’s growing population. The attacks on humans won’t stop, until humans stop poaching the tigers habitat & food supply!! “

,TNN | Oct 25, 2014, 06.06 PM IST

BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh police on Saturday arrested 29 people over an arson attack after a school teacher was mauled to death a tiger in near Bandhavgarh National Park in Katni district on Friday.

The mob had attacked forest personnel, including local forest range officer while keeping some of them hostage, besides policemen and local journalists.

They said forest officers were overlooking the fact that some tigers had turned into man-eaters. tiger2

Two motorized vessels and a dozen vehicles owned by the department were also set on fire, said officials. Prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC were issued to bring situation under control. Amod Lakda (55), posted at Karchulia village’s government middle school, was attacked by the tiger in the buffer area near a water tank inside Khitouli range. He was a native of Chhattisgarh‘s Jashpur area.

Villagers claim this was the fourth incident of an attack by a big cat. Forest officers had been ignoring their pleas to shift the tiger. They say the matter was taken with chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, but in vain.

“Extensive damage has been caused to forest department property. The death of a teacher following tiger attack provoked people to go berserk,” said Narendra Kumar, chief wildlife warden.

Meanwhile forest officers have launched a hunt for the tiger for shifting it to a safe location.

News Link:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bhopal/29-arrested-in-arson-attack-after-tiger-kills-teacher-in-Madhya-Pradesh/articleshow/44933010.cms?intenttarget=no&utm_source=TOI_AShow_OBWidget&utm_medium=Int_Ref&utm_campaign=TOI_AShow

VIDEO: Leopard Terrorises Hospital Patients In Indian City Rampage

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“This leopard didn’t kill anyone, it was hardly a rampage; it was merely hungry! Humans can’t take away their natural habitat & expect them to just move on! It is humans that are at fault here; by taking away the leopards land etc. Animals go where the food is, they are very territorial, taking away their land involves taking away their food supply, so of course they are going to look elsewhere for food! 

“This poor Leopard must have been scared to death, from the deafening crowd outside…the Forest Rangers or Police should have cord-end off the area & let the Leopard leave the same way it came in! The crowds were ridiculous, so I have no pity for anyone who was harmed…they shouldn’t have been so bloody nosey or so loud! I’m just praying the leopard isn’t caught by locals; if it is, they will surely make it pay, like they have with others they have captured….by burning it to death in a cage or beating it to death!! (As in the picture below) “

By New Delhi 2:51PM GMT 24 Feb 2014

As a man-eating tiger preys on villagers in the jungle, a leopard is prowling an Indian city’s streets.

leopard_606_600x450

Soldiers, police and wildlife experts were today hunting a leopard which walked into a hospital ward in Meerut, a large city in northern India, and caused panic among staff and patients.

The big cat was first spotted by a timber merchant who saw it emerging from a lavatory in his warehouse and alerted the police on Sunday morning.

Two people in a large crowd which gathered at the site were reported to have been attacked by the leopard after one of them lifted a plank under which it had been hiding.

It was later seen by a caretaker at the Meerut Cantonment Hospital in the heart of the city’s military area where it walked onto a ward where several men were being treated.

Staff at the hospital helped the patients escape the ward and then locked the doors to trap the leopard inside.

It managed to escape and a hunt is now under way to track it down.

“The leopard was last spotted on Monday at around 3:30am on a road near the hospital but since then there have been no sightings. We are keeping a vigil but there is a strong possibility that it has returned to its natural habitat,” said Abhishek Singh, Assistant Superintendent of Police, Meerut.

“It was hit by a tranquilizer dart but we are not sure how effective that was. The animal was scared and was running away from people and in this commotion few people were injured. We were trying to control the crowds from getting near the leopard,” he added.

Villagers kill leopard in India

This poor leopard was beaten to death by villagers!

Ashok Kumar of the Wildlife Trust of India said more leopards are straying into towns because humans are increasingly encroaching on their habitats.

“This is happening very frequently because their habitats are shrinking and they come into human habitation for food and space,” he said. “So one can not say these animals are hunting humans for food, they are merely looking for food because humans took their food source away…if someone gets in their way & makes them feel threatened; one can’t blame the animal, it’s only acting on instinct!!”

Leopard enters Meerut hospital, attacks patients: Video

Published on 24 Feb 2014

High alert has been sounded in Meerut city after a leopard entered a hospital Sunday. A police inspector and media person got injured when they ventured too close to the irritated leopard. The big cat was spotted by a caretaker as it was entering the hospital.

News Link:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/india/10658173/Leopard-terrorises-hospital-patients-in-Indian-city-rampage.html

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Ivory Trade Video: Suspected Poachers in Kenya Kill Two Wildlife Rangers

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July 19th –NAIROBI, KENYA — The Kenya Wildlife Service says two wildlife rangers were killed Thursday responding to dozens of suspected poachers in the Kipini Conservatory game reserve on Kenya’s coast. 

one-elephant-200x160

Officials say the suspected poachers were armed with AK-47 rifles and opened fire on several rangers who were responding to a poaching incident inside the reserve.

Kenyan Wildlife Service spokesman Paul Mbugua says the rangers were actually attacked twice and one of the two men killed was a commander. One poacher was also killed.

“Then after that particular incident the rangers made a tactical withdrawal and then later they moved in to collect the body of the fallen ranger, and as they moved in to collect the body, the poachers were lying in wait,” he said. “They actually set up an ambush, and the rangers together with the police they were fired at, and during that second incident, which occurred at five in the evening, one of our officers who was actually the officer commanding the team actually went down.”

Mbugua said poachers are getting bold and patient. He said that after the first shooting incident, poachers had to lie low for up to five hours, waiting for the rangers to come back, knowing eventually they will come to collect the body of their fallen ranger.

“They are extremely brave and this is what we have been communicating, and you can see they are very sophisticated. One particular poacher had 208 rounds on him, he had three magazines for his firearm and he had other rounds of ammunitions of course in his possession,” he said. “And that tells you that these guys are willing to go to any length to ensure that they get their way.”

According to a recent United Nations Environment Program study, the number of elephants illegally killed in Africa has doubled over the last decade, reaching 25,000 killed in 2012, while the ivory trade has tripled in size.

Experts say the poaching of African elephants is at an all-time high, raising the possibility that the species could become extinct this century.

Trade in ivory was made illegal in 1989. Demand for ivory remains high in Asia, however, where it is used for ornaments and traditional medicine.

News Link:http://www.voanews.com/content/suspected-poachers-in-kenya-kill-two-wildlife-rangers/1705521.html

Petitions to sign please, also in above menu:-

Petition to Save Africas Elephants Ban Thai Ivory Trade

Published on 13 Jan 2013

Every day in the savannas and forests of Africa, elephants are being gunned down for their ivory tusks. Across the continent, tens of thousands of these majestic animals are being slaughtered each year. In many places the species has already been poached to extinction. If we don’t act now there may be no wild elephants left.
Elephant poaching is being driven by demand for ivory carvings and trinkets in Asia where many consumers think “elephant teeth” simply fall out and re-grow without hurting the animal. The truth is that ivory comes from dead elephants.
In Thailand, elephants are revered as sacred. There is a saying that there would be no Thailand without the elephant. But Thailand is also the biggest unregulated market for ivory in the world. Although it is against the law to sell ivory from African elephants in Thailand, ivory from domestic Thai elephants can be sold legally. As a result, massive quantities of illegal African ivory are being laundered through Thai shops. 
To save Africa’s elephants it is essential that Thailand closes this legal loophole.

Join us in asking Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to ban all ivory trade in Thailand.
Representatives from 176 governments will be meeting in Bangkok March 3-14 to discuss global wildlife trade issues, including the elephant poaching crisis. While the eyes of the world are turned to Thailand, we want to present 1 million signatures to Mrs Sinawatra.

Sign the petition and tell the Thai Prime Minister to ban ivory trade and save Africa’s elephants!

“Dear Prime Minister Sinawatra, we are greatly concerned about the record levels of elephant poaching in Africa. Demand for illegal ivory products could drive the species to extinction in Africa, and Thailand’s elephants could be next. You can save them. We urge you to ban all ivory trade in Thailand to give elephants their best chance of survival.”
For more information:
http://www.wwf.or.th/killthetrade
http://www.panda.org/ban

Forest Officials Try To Downplay Tiger Poaching Issue

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NAGPUR: The first official statement on tiger poaching issued by the forest department on July 19, exactly 43 days after two organized poachers Mamru and Chika were arrested, seems to an exercise in washing hands off the poaching problem rather than trying to tackle it head on.

The statement by chief conservator of forests (CCF) for Nagpur Circle SH Patil, which was approved by additional principal chief conservator of forests (wildlife) SS Mishra, comes in the wake TOI’s (Times Of India) expose of call detail report of tiger skin trader from Haryana Sarju Bagdi on July 20. Sarju procured tiger skins right under the nose of forest officials.

Tiger poaching in India

Tiger poaching in India

It was TOI which had first exposed the poaching case on June 10, but the department never came clear on the issue. First, it was about sale of five tiger skin, which included one from Tumsar and another from Melghat, bought by Sarju from Aamdi Fata near Ramtek. Even the mystery behind five tiger skins has not been solved yet.

Subsequent interrogation of poachers revealed that Sarju had procured six more tiger skins from Bhandarbodi near Ramtek in the first week of April. The total tiger skins Sarju bought from various gangs was 11.

Patil has clarified that arrested poachers never admitted about the latter six skins in their confession. Instead of probing the serious issue in toto, the forest officials are trying to downplay it.

Investigating officials from Melghat and Nagpur told TOI that the fact of six tiger skins procured in April first week was revealed by poachers when they were quizzed in Melghat on June 9, but the statement was not recorded for reasons best known to forest officials.

The six skins included one tiger each from Katangi in MP and another from Melghat. Four were suspected to be from other places, perhaps from PAs near Nagpur, and hence officials buried the fact.

However, another fact, which the department is hiding, is that is that when Mamru and Chika were arrested by police and forest officials on June 6 night, Chika was in police custody while Mamru was in forest custody at Seminary Hills. “It might quite be possible that Mamru must have told many facts to the officials, also about the six skins here,” feel officials. But why were statements at Seminary Hills not recorded?

Confession statement of Mamru, a copy of which is with TOI, taken on June 17, itself exposes forest department’s failure to nail the poachers and their lack of intelligence. Mamru has admitted that his gang stayed in Bhandarbodi. The CDR of Sarju also reveals he went there on April 3. He had also stayed in Mahadula during that period.

What were they doing in Bhandarbodi? Why did Sarju visit there? Why did forest officials take Chika and Mamru to Bhandarbodi for probe? These are some of the questions that remain unanswered.

Patil has said that Mamru and Chika were nabbed based on the CDR of poachers involved in Dhakna (Melghat) tiger poaching case on March 4. Actually, police nabbed the culprits on June 6. If officials were working on CDR since March 4, what did they do for three months? Why could not they nab Sarju when he was here from March 30 till April 6 and then again after May 26?

Another glaring fact is that Mamru admitted his gang killed Ghatang (Melghat) tiger in second week of May. If forest officials were working on CDR since March, why did they fail to nab the culprits for over 70 days?

The poachers revealed names of 16 gang members involved in tiger poaching here but none of them has been arrested yet. Two poachers Yarlen and Barsul were handed over by the MP officials and others were arrested by Melghat officials.

Instead of criticizing the media, if forest department is really serious about poaching, why the matter is not being handed over to the CBI? Even forest minister Patangrao Kadam has asked the officials to go ahead with CBI probe. Not to mention that notorious tiger poacher Sansarchand is set to be released.

News Link:http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/nagpur/Forest-officials-try-to-downplay-tiger-poaching-issue/articleshow/21290373.cms?intenttarget=no

Related articles & Petitions & Information

Over 500 rhinos poached in South Africa this year : Czech Customs Seize Rhino Horns, 16 Charged

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JOHANNESBURG, Gauteng: More than 500 South African rhinos have been killed this year, official figures showed Wednesday, amid strong demand for horns on the Asian black market.

As of yesterday (Tuesday), a total of 515 rhino have been killed so far  this year,” said the environment ministry’s deputy director general Fundisile  Mketeni.

The lucrative Asian black market for rhino horn has driven a boom in  poaching in South Africa, which has the largest rhino population in the world. Many of the killings are thought to be perpetrated by poachers from global  syndicates.

On Tuesday Czech authorities charged 16 people from a gang that sent registered hunters to South Africa who returned with horns that were to be sent  on to Asian countries.

Customs officers seized 24 rhino horns, worth an estimated 3.9 million euros ($5.1 million).

Last year, 668 rhinos were killed in South Africa, a record high that could be surpassed if the poaching continues at today’s pace.

The army’s deployment in the hardest-hit area, the Kruger National Park, has done little to stem the killings. — AFP

News LinkOver 500 rhinos poached in South Africa this year – Latest – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/latest/over-500-rhinos-poached-in-south-africa-this-year-1.325633#ixzz2Zy7SUzk3

Customs Administration of the Czech Republic
Rhino horns seized from smugglers by the Czech customs

Czech Customs Seize Rhino Horns, 16 People Charged

PRAGUECzech customs seized 24 rhinoceros horns Tuesday and charged 16 people with bringing the prized material illegally from South Africa to sell it in Asia.

“Our investigation showed that the transport is organized by an international ring of smugglers who have used fake export permissions seemingly complying with (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) to import the rhinoceros horns from the Republic of South Africa to the European Union,” said Jiri Bartak, spokesman for the Czech customs department.

The arrests follow an investigation by Czech and EU customs authorities begun in 2011.

The gang was alleged to have planned re-exporting the horns as trophies, according to their fake documentation.

Rhino horns are popular in parts of Asia where many believe they can cure various illnesses or work as an aphrodisiac.

Czech authorities estimate the value of the seized rhino horns at up to 100 million koruna ($5 million), Mr. Bartak said.

The authorities said the ring employed people impersonating hunters to gain permission to ship horns acquired from African poachers to Europe and elsewhere.

Czech customs didn’t release details of where the charged individuals came from or give their names. If convicted they face up to eight years in prison.

News Link:-http://blogs.wsj.com/emergingeurope/2013/07/23/czech-customs-seize-rhino-horns-16-people-charged/

Contains Very Graphic Media: Rhino Carcass Discovered in Marakele National Park

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“Please note; Viewer Discretion Advised for video & image below!”

Date: 18th July 2013 – A fresh rhino carcass, with its horn removed, was discovered yesterday in the northern section of the Marakele National Park near Thabazimbi in the Limpopo Province

South African National Parks field rangers, who were out on a routine patrol, detected the tracks of three unidentified people, and followed the tracks to where they exited the Park.

Upon backtracking on the same tracks the carcass of a de-horned rhino bull was found at around 17:00 yesterday afternoon, 17 July 2013. The crime scene was secured and is currently being investigated by a SAPS forensics team together with SANParks officials.

The Marakele National Park has not had any rhino poaching incidents for the last two years according to Mr Paul Daphne, SANParks Head of Communications, who said “We are distressed at the loss of this rhino, as SANParks had put in place a number of enhanced security measures to prevent further rhino poaching in Marakele since the loss of a number of animals at the end of 2011.

Our ranger teams have been working tirelessly around the clock to ensure that rhino poachers do not establish a foothold in the Marakele National Park.”

“We will continue to fight the battle against rhino poaching, and we will be implementing further measures in order to ensure greater rhino security. We are continuing to work together with other role players to develop more effective anti-poaching strategies for the Park and also in the Greater Waterberg Biosphere area.” said Daphne.

Anyone with information can contact Poaching tip-off anonymous lines on 0800 205 005, 08600 10111 or Crime-Line on 32211.

Issued by:
South African National Parks (SANParks) Northern Region Communications
Tel: 012 426 5304

Enquiries:
Divhani Maremba
SANParks Regional Communications Manager: Northern Region
Tel: 012 426-5304; Cell: 082 941 9980
Email: divhani.maremba@sanparks.org

or

Paul Daphne
Head of Communications, SANParks
Tel: (012) 426 5072; Cell: 082 806 5409
Email: paul.daphne@sanparks.org

News Link:-http://www.sanparks.org/about/news/default.php?id=55614

Please copy & share this picture with everyone! http://www.stoprhinopoaching.com/ 

Rhino legacy Vietnam China dead baby

“The following video has nothing to do with the above post, but it does depict the horrific truth of how  rhino, are literally hacked to pieces for their horn; left to die a very slow agonizing death!! We have to do everything possible to stop these magnificent animals from more suffering. Please sign all petitions, share, cross posts, anything to help! We can’t let more die horrific deaths, because people choose to ignore the fact, that the rhino horn has no more health benefits; than human finger nails. Until people realize this is the truth, more will die from having their faces hacked off! If anyone has any rhino stories they feel may benefit the cause by being on a blog, please use them; we can help with the tools we have, to educate & bring more awareness to this problem. 

Very Graphic Viewer Discretion Advised – Rhino Poaching Video Shocks Journalist

Published on 8 Apr 2013

Lowvelder is currently on a media tour in the Kruger National Park where the effects of rhino poaching in this iconic park is being highlighted.

Read more on on the week’s proceedings and rhino poaching in South Africa on Looklocal Lowveld: http://www.looklocal.co.za/looklocal/…

Please, if you were moved by the above, (unless your a corpse I don’t see how anyone couldn’t be) sign the following petitions. There are also more petitions in the page menu “new petitions added 2013”:

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