Six translocated swamp deer die within a year

- BHAWANI BHATTA, Kanchanpur

Apr 3, 2018-

Deaths of six swamp deer or Barasingha that were relocated to the Chitwan National Park (CNP) from Shuklaphanta National Park (SNP) last year have affected the translocation programme.

The government had a plan of introducing  25 swamp deer to the CNP. Under the programme, five female and two male swamp deer from the SNP were released in the CNP last April. 

Only one of the seven swamp deer survives today. Bed Kumar Dhakal, the 

CNP chief conservation officer, said the lone swamp deer has joined a herd of 

spotted deer. 

Anil Prasai, programme chief of Shuklaphanta National Trust for Nature Conservation, said the translocation programme has been postponed following the deaths of the six swamp deer. 

Conservationists say six swamp deer died due to the stress caused by long hours of travel, heat exhaustion and the flood of August 2017. 

The swamp deer had spent up to 14 hours in enclosure during the translocation process which, conservationists say might have taken a toll on them. The long chase that ensued in the process of darting the animals before translocation could also have affected their conditions.

Conservationists are now planning to adopt a more humane way to capture and translocate the swamp deer. 

Prasai said they could use helicopters to corral and dart swamp deer so that they are not exhausted.  

Discussions are also on to reduce the travel period down to four or five hours. 

Published: 03-04-2018 08:13

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