2 months after relocation of Navegaon (Tadoba) village, tiger takes over the teritory
Vijay Pinjarkar,TNN | Dec 4, 2013, 05.44 AM IST
NAGPUR: A couple of months after the Navegaon (Ramdegi) village in Tadoba was relocated completely, a tiger has occupied the territory. More than 400 acres of farm land and village area that became inviolate is now a safe haven for wild animals.
The National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) norms state that an inviolate space of 800-1000 sq km was needed to ensure viable populations of tigers and other wild animals (co-predators, prey and forest), thereby ensuring ecological viability of the entire habitat.
Hence, as a priority, state notified buffer area around tiger reserves and relocation of villages inside is being taken to create inviolate spaces for tigers crying for space.
"Presence of not only the tiger, but also leopard and sloth bear has also been recorded at the site. Besides, herbivores like chitals, sambars, nilgais, wild boars and bisons are frequently sighted in the Navegaon meadows," said Virendra Tiwari, chief conservator of forests (CCF) & field director, Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve.
The park management has also started works related to habitat development. The mud of village houses was used to develop roads. The village water body is being restored by deepening it. Besides, six new water bodies are being developed for wildlife. In months to come, tourists entry from Navegaon will be better than Moharli.
"The variety of bird species now sighted in Navegaon indicates that a good ecosystem is being developed. We also weed out four tonne unpalatable grass and will now grow palatable grass species in 30 hectares for herbivores. An exclusion plot (seed bank) is also being developed in Navegaon where species of grass will be grown," said Sujoy Dodal, deputy director (core).
"Relocation of Navegaon will increase carrying capacity of tigers in Tadoba," he said.
"Before Navegaon was shifted, there were sporadic sightings of leopards and tigers near the village. However, post relocation, carnivores and even herbivores are regularly seen in the 400 acre area that has become inviolate," claimed Bandu Dhotre, honorary wildlife warden.
"Now carnivores can prey on herbivores in the same area without coming into conflict with humans. This is the best part of relocation. It will boost ecotourism," he said.
"In future, Navegaon relocation will be a stepping stone for Tadoba as the inviolate space may help accommodate 2-3 tigers, which otherwise could have moved out of the park ," he added.
A regular visitor to Tadoba Himanshu Bagde is delighted to hear that a tiger has occupied Navegaon. "During my recent visits, there was evidence of wildlife quenching its thirst at the village lake, which was once a bustling place of villagers, but if tiger has occupied the territory, it is really positive development," said Bagde.
* The 400 acre land forest department got may be less, but has great value as 35-km patch from Mohari-Tadoba-Navegaon-Khadsangi has become contiguous.
* Tigers and leopards which used to come in conflict with villagers earlier will now lead a peaceful life.
* Navegaon will help improve carrying capacity of Tadoba.