Wildlife Celebrations at Periyar reserve
The Wildlife Week will be observed in a grand way at the Periyar Tiger Reserve (PTR) in Thekkady from October 2 to 8.
Arts and literary competitions, forest trekking, nature study camp, seminar, lecture series, road show, documentary film presentation, wildlife photography competition and public awareness camp will form part of the programme.
The arts and literary competitions will be held for upper primary, high school, college students and members of non-governmental organisations.
The forest trekking and nature study camp will be for selected college students. The winners in the competitions will be allowed a free boat travel in the Thekkady dam.
A senior official at the PTR said that no entrance fee will be collected from the tourists who reach Thekkady during the week.
Those who want to participate in the competitions should register their name at the organising office, old panchayat building in Thekkady junction, on September 28, 29 or 30, he said.
Back night traffic ban in Bandipur
Even as Kerala’s private travel agencies and the Kerala State Transport Corporation and few traders are trying hard to lift the night traffic ban on the Bandipur-Sultan Batheri Road, many Kerala-based NGOs now want a similar ban on the Kerala side.
The State Government is under pressure to lift the night ban on National Highway 212 connecting Gundlupet and Ooty and on NH-67 connecting Gundlupet and Sultan Batheri.
The Kerala-based NGOs say, “Without banning night traffic on the Kerala side, the ban in Karnataka is incomplete as there are roadkills even on this side. Unfortunately, we do not have any statistics,” said S Guruvayurappan, regional Co-ordinator, Wildlife Protection Society of India.
Last November, five NGOs had convened a press meet in Wayanad and appealed to the Kerala Government to respond positively to the ban plea.
Though the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has emphasised on conservation of tiger based on the landscapes of Nagarhole national park, Bandipur national park, Madhumalai and Wayanad Wildlife sanctuary (WWS), the wildlife enthusiasts have stated that not much effort has been done from the side of Kerala to protect the forest despite the frequent sighting of the big cat in the region.
The Muthanga range of WWS adjoining Kerala- Karnataka border, according to the wildlife enthusiasts, is at a greater risk due to anthropogenic pressure due to these vehicles waiting to enter Karnataka. NGOs such as “One Earth One Life” have now launched education programmes on the need for the ban in Wayanad and Kozhikode.
Wayanad Prakruthi Samraksha Samithi is creating awareness regarding the wildlife protection in other parts adjoining the region along with Wildlife Protection Society of India.