Vehicular traffic in BNP upsetting wildlife, says SWB member
- Vehicular traffic impact
- Change in behaviour of wildlife
- Disintegration of herds
- Increased intolerance to human interventions leading to conflicts
- Death of animals in road accidents reported regularly
State Wildlife Board member Naveen J.S has expressed concern over increasing vehicular movement on the roads in Bannerghatta National Park (BNP) and consequent growing human-animal conflict. He has brought the issue to the notice of the Additional Chief Secretary through a letter.
Explaining the issue, Naveen says BNP has an unusual topography and as such is narrow and long. "(Narrow East to West and Long North to South). It is as such flanked by three roads maintained by Anekal taluk board. All these roads connect small villages and hamlets with no commercial activity as per restrictions placed within the ESZ. The Shuddahalli Lach Reserve and the Ragihalli State forest are inhabited by several species of wildlife and both these serve as an important corridor for their free movement in search of food and water both of which factors are crucial and interdependent," he explained in the letter.
"Vehicular movement has increased on these roads in recent times and wildlife sightings and human animal conflicts are reported frequently with the result that the local villagers frighten the animals with the use of crackers etc resulting in the animals being trapped and helpless. If the frequency of vehicular traffic continues unabated this will lead to habitat destruction and wildlife loss," the letter lamented.
Naveen said there have been reports of increased commercial value of land, resorts, mining activity, sand filtering, farming leading to disturbance to wildlife and consequent habitat disharmony. "It has been stated by several experts that such unnatural division of wildlife is unscientific and disturbs their peaceful existence. Restricting wildlife movement is against all major principles of conservation. During the lockdown herds were found on roads.," he emphasises.
Naveen suggests that along the Kalkere - State Highway (SH)-87 and the BNP Anekal road and the BNP Kaggalipura road, commercial traffic has to be stopped between sunset and dawn to improve wildlife population.