Special training for tiger census begins in Uttar Pradesh

Lucknow, Feb 11 (IANS) Uttar Pradesh wildlife authorities undertook a special exercise Thursday to train all concerned officials in carrying out a census of tigers in the state.

Officials are hopeful of a marginal rise in the state’s tiger population that stood at 109 as per the last census carried out in 2007.

‘The training is being imparted in batches at a special camp here so that we can update our data base on the state’s tiger population before the arrival of joint teams from the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) and National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) for carrying out the final census next month,’ Uttar Pradesh’s chief wildlife conservator B.K. Patnaik told IANS here Thursday.

‘The basic data is prepared by our field personnel including district forest officers and rangers, who depend largely on the traditional methods such as pug-marks, scratch marks on tree trunks, urine and excreta trails,’ he said.

‘And it was on the basis of these details that WII teams install their equipment for camera-trapping of the big cat,’ he added.

The training programme was being conducted by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) nominee Bivash Pandav, who had specially flown in for the purpose from Nepal.

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