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TN forest dept warns motorists to avoid speeding in Anamalai Tiger Reserve area

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TN forest dept warns motorists to avoid speeding in Anamalai Tiger Reserve area

Chennai, April 13 (Ajit Weekly News) The Tamil Nadu Forest Department officials have issued a warning to motorists passing through the Anamalai Tiger Reserve (ATR), urging them to drive at reduced speeds to prevent collisions with animals crossing the roads.

Forest department officials told Ajit Weekly News that the warning is due to the presence of a large number of Nilgiri Thar, Nilgiri Lion-Tailed Macaques, Nilgiri Langur, Bonnet Macaques, Sambar deer, wild hares, and porcupines in the area.

Officials stated that the directive follows the frequent sightings of these animals, often accompanied by their offspring, emerging from the forest range and crossing roads.

Forest department officials reported several incidents of these animals being struck by speeding motorists, particularly reckless two-wheeler riders.

To address this concern, the forest department has deployed four Anti-Depredation Squads between Puthuthottam and Iyarpadi, along with two additional squads within the Valparai town area, aimed at deterring speeding motorists from traversing the ATR.

G. Venatesh, Forest Range Officer of Valparai Forest Range, said: “In contrast to previous years, I have observed a higher presence of wild animals, along with their young, crossing the roads. This indicates an increase in their population.”

He added, “We anticipate gaining clearer insights from the forthcoming wildlife census results. Despite efforts such as filling check dams and percolation ponds at Attakatti, as well as providing water troughs in Kadamparai, Akkamalai, and Upper Aliyar on a weekly basis for the animals’ benefit, they still venture towards the roads, necessitating diversion by our forest staff.”

The forest official also highlighted instances of reckless driving, primarily by two-wheeler riders. Wildlife staff employed by the department are primarily focused on preventing such behaviour using barricades and other means.

–Ajit Weekly News

aal/prw


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