07 Dec, 2019
A Total of 50 Rhino Poachers Arrested in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park in 2019
Rhinos have been a severe victim to poaching in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park majorly between 2006 and 2015. However, the national park has recorded a significant drop in the number of rhino deaths since the year 2016 as the government of Assam had been working consistently towards rhino conservation. And in the fight to preserve the pride of the state, over 50 poachers have been arrested so far in the year 2019. Of which, 42 have been nabbed from the Biswanath Wildlife Division alone.
On 5th December 2019, the forest and police personnel of Biswanath Chariali arrested two rhino poachers of age 22 and 45. The former one is a local resident and the latter is from Gingia in Sonitpur district. Not only this but the joint team of the forest officials and police even seized a modified rifle from them. With this, altogether 7 poachers were arrested in the last week.
In Case You Didn’t Know
Entitled as the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Kaziranga National Park hosts two-thirds of the world’s rhino population. According to a census conducted in March 2018 by some recognized wildlife NGOs and the forest department of Assam, the rhino population data in the park was around 2,413. Diving deep into it, the figure comprises 1,641 adult rhinos including 793 females, 642 males, 206 unsexed and 387 sub-adults including 385 calves, 149 females, 122 unsexed, 116 males.
The Reason Behind Poaching of Rhinos
It is the high demand for the unique horn of Rhinos in Asia, that we get to hear such rhino poaching cases. The horn is made of the same protein that constitutes the formation of hair. So, for this reason, rhinos are poached and the horns are smuggled. The traditional medicine made out of horn is even believed to cure cancer and various other illness. Not only this, but the horns are used in ornamental carvings too.
Rhino Poaching Cases in Kaziranga National Park 2006 to 2019:
|Year||Number of Rhinos Poached|
What’s the say of the forest conservationists on rhino poaching?
The assistant forest conservator of Kaziranga National Park, Ritu P. Borah is of the opinion that rhino poaching increases especially during the full moon time as this innocent creature becomes more visible. Rhinos get their skin covered with mud when wallowing in the grass which makes them dazzled when moonlight beams on the skin making it easier for the poachers to spot them. Adding to this he said, it is during the dry season when the poachers try to make their way into the park as everything is visible and the park is easily accessible by foot. And it is the Biswanath division of the park that they mostly choose as they can use the country boats to use to cross the river Brahmaputra and enter Kaziranga National Park.
The Kaziranga National Park has been successful in bringing down the killing of rhinos to half when compared to the year 2018 where six rhinos lost their lives. While the number of rhino death has come down to three till November 2019. Isn’t it good news that our wildlife conservationists and forest officials are working round the clock to protect One-Horned Rhinos? Of course, it is and we hope to hear such positive news in the years to come.