By Hemanta Kumar Nath

Pobitora (Assam) [India], May 22 (ANI): While nearly 7 lakh people in 31 districts of Assam are reeling under the fury of floods, the authority of Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary has taken all preventive measures to deal with the deluge and protect wild animals including one-horned rhinoceros.

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The wildlife sanctuary located in central Assam's Morigaon district is home to 107 rhinos.

Nayan Jyoti Das, Ranger of Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary said that there are six highlands including two big highlands in the wildlife sanctuary to provide shelter to animals.

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"This year, the flood level within the wildlife sanctuary is within limits so far. Presently there are six highlands including two big highlands in the wildlife sanctuary. The wild animals can reside in the highlands when the wildlife sanctuary is flooded," Das said.

He informed that the wildlife sanctuary has a mechanised boat, a speed boat, and around 18 country-made boats which are normally used for patrolling purposes.

"We have 17 camps in the protected area and among them, only two camps are inundated by floodwaters. Right now we have nothing such problems from the floods," Das said.

The forest official further said that one big highland with a length of around 800 meters and 20 meters breath was constructed in 2021.

The Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary authority has been giving full protection to the wild animals of the sanctuary as not a single rhino was poached in the last eight years.

"The last rhino poaching incident happened in the wildlife sanctuary in 2014. We are getting full support from the local villagers in the mission to protect the one-horned rhinoceros. We are continuously monitoring the protected areas, joint patrolling is also carried out with the help of district administration and police," Das said.

He also said that in the last rhino census, a total of 107 rhinos including 30 male rhinos, 50 female rhinos, and 27 calves were found.

"In 2020, we got nine flood waves and due to shortage of grass and fodder, 9 rhinos died. In the last four years, 20 rhinos died naturally and two rhinos were translocated here to Manas National Park," the Ranger said. (ANI)

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