By T. Appala Naidu
Youths deployed at 50 villages to alert forestofficials about poaching in Kolleru lake
As winged guests have turned the Atapaka Birds sanctuary and other suitable locations in Kolleru Lake into their winter home with the advent of breeding season, the wildlife management authorities have drawn an action plan to put a check on poaching of the birds.
The Wildlife Management Wing of the Forest Department based in Eluru has an exclusive mobile team led by Ranger cadre officer who keeps vigil on the areas adjacent to Kolleru Lake, preventing hunting of both migratory and resident birds.
It is learnt that the poachers normally remain active in the winter season, in which Painted Storks and Pelicans migrate to the India’s largest freshwater lake, spreading over Krishna and West Godavari districts. “We have informers, mostly youth, deployed at strategic 50 villages to keep us updated about poaching and incidence of hunting of birds,” In-Charge Wildlife Division Divisional Forest Officer G. Rammohan Rao said.
The youth will alert forest officials about the groups or individuals who engaged in hunting of migratory birds until the breeding season ends by May end. “Our strategy of involving locals in preventing poaching has come to fruition and the informers now are being given a key role to ensure better living conditions for birds at the lake,” added Mr. Rammohan Rao.
The task of the special mobile team and volunteers has been turned into a strenuous one as the migratory birds are exploring locations outside Atapaka Birds’ Sanctuary to weave nests.