For first time 19 swamp deer translocated from Kaziranga to Manas National Park
For the first time in India, a herd of 19 swamp deer were translocated from Kaziranga National Park to Manas National Park in Assam. It was part of ‘Eastern Swamp Deer Conservation Project’ to source their population to Manas National Park.
This translocation initiative was initiated by a team of experts from the Assam Forest Department (AFD), Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) and Assam College of Veterinary Science.
As a part of translocation, they were transported more than 400 kms away from present habitat and were released in a specially prepared enclosure or boma in Manas. This boma (enclosure) is secured by a two-line power fence installed over a barrier to deter leopards.
In this enclosure, they are provided with transplanted short grass originally from their habitat to ensure well- being of the herd.
As part of translocation they will kept in boma for the first few months and later will be released in the park in batches. While some of them will be kept in the boma for breeding purposes.
Swamp deer (Rucervus duvaucelii ranjitsinhi) are popularly known as ‘Barasingha’. Its entire population is currently found only in Kaziranga National Park.
Eastern Swamp Deer Conservation Project- It is an ecological research programme of AFD and WTI along with ONGC started in 2010. The aim of the project is to understand the ecology of the eastern swamp deer and develop management strategies for conservation of their last surviving population in India.
The project generally focuses on researching diet, genetic constitution and behaviour of swap deers which will provide useful insight for scientific management of the sub-species in Kaziranga, along with creating a second home in Manas National Park.
Translocation: It is a wildlife conservation biology which includes capture, transport and release or introduce species from their original habitat to another habitat far away. It seeks to reduce the risk of their extinction by increasing, augmenting their critical population.