Rhino carcass found

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By Staff Reporter in Guwahati
  • Published 7.10.09
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Guwahati, Oct. 7: A day after Dispur announced incentives for forest employees to give a boost to conservation efforts, Kaziranga National Park today woke up to find a carcass of yet another rhino floating in one of its numerous water bodies.

Ironically, the carcass was found near the Dimoli anti-poaching camp under the Bagori range of the 430-square- km Kaziranga National Park, a world heritage site.

The fact that the animal’s horn was missing raised doubts that it might have fallen victim to poachers. Forest officials, however, claimed that the animal could have died of natural causes, adding that the cause of the rhino’s death can be ascertained only after a post-mortem.

“There is a possibility that the rhino died because of infighting and its horn broke off in the fight,” the official said.

Nine rhinos have been killed by poachers at Kaziranga this year.

On September 19, a rhino was shot dead by poachers at the Burapahar range of the park.

A few others have died natural deaths, either because of infighting or old age.

The official said infighting among the rhinos at Kaziranga had increased of late with a substantial rise in its population. The park currently has over 2,000 rhinos.

In yet another setback to Kaziranga’s conservation efforts, a Royal Bengal tiger was found dead last evening near the Mikirjan anti-poaching camp. The animal was suspected to have died of poisoning.

“There are no signs of injury on the carcass of the female tiger,” a forest official said.

This is the second tiger found dead because of poisoning by poachers inside the park in recent times. On September 19, another Royal Bengal tiger was found dead in the Mohpara area of Kaziranga sanctuary.

Forest officials claim poisoning is the latest technique being used by poachers to nail rhinos and tigers at Kaziranga and Orang parks.

Conservation of Royal Bengal tigers has become a top priority for the Kaziranga authorities after the rhino population reached a “safe zone”.