Five Bihar villages to have special zones to reduce human-animal conflictstext_fields
Patna: Five areas in Bihar are going to be developed into a model human-carnivore coexistence zone to reduce conflicts. Villages of the Valmiki Tiger Reserve in the West Champaran district have been chosen by the state government, the Wildlife Trust of India - a Nepalese organisation, and a UK-based Chester zoo.
The initiative will start in 2023 and last for three years.
The major goal of the project will be to end the human-carnivore conflict in the Valmiki-Chitwan-Parsa transboundary landscape. P K Gupta, Bihar's Chief Wildlife Warden, said the department has given its go-ahead for the initiative.
The official further said the state government has taken several measures to protect the habitats of the big cats and conserve its population based on the National Tiger Conservation Authority's guidelines. According to official data, the tiger population has increased by 50% between 2014 and 2018, from 32 to 50.
He added that the Chester Zoo has been actively working on human-wildlife conflict worldwide for the past several years. They also focus on Terai in Nepal where the human-tiger conflict is a concern. The forest corridors between India and Nepal are extensively used by tigers and other large mammals. A man-eater tiger killed nine people and many domestic animals in the Valmiki Tiger Reserve recently. The animal was shot dead in October 2022.
"The project will focus on community engagement, develop methods to reduce livestock depredation, and alter village practices and behavioural issues. Human-wildlife conflict is among the most severe threats to many species around the world. The Valmiki Tiger Reserve plays a critical role in maintaining genetically robust populations of tigers," said the official.