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Drones to monitor tiger reserve

The Dudhwa Tiger Reserve (DTR) will soon be under complete drone camera surveillance, its field director Ramesh Pandey recently announced.

Work for the surveillance programme, which is being called e-bird project, has already begun. A pilot operation was conducted on International Tiger Day, July 29, where drone cameras were used to monitor rhinos in the rehabilitation area.

“Within just 30 minutes, we were able to locate and monitor nine rhinos in the rehabilitation area. We managed to keep a close watch on them without being noticed,” Pandey said.

The e-bird project is a joint initiative of the reserve and Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun. The institute will provide required number of drone cameras to the reserve and also give training to the forest staff, Pandey said.

“Drone cameras will assist the patrolling teams to keep a watch on the movement of tigers, leopards, rhinos, Dudhwa jumbos and other wild species. They will further help in habitat management, countering man-animal conflicts and checking criminal activities,” said.

Monitoring wildlife in the tiger reserve has been a major challenge for field staffers over the years. The rough terrain is interspersed by Mohana, Sharda rivers and numerous small canals and water bodies. Moreover presence of carnivorous animals, and waterlogged routes.PTI


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