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Rescued vultures released to the wild

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  11 April 2015 12:00 AM GMT

Sivasagar, April 10: In a joint operation with the Assam Forest Department, IFAW-WTI team released five Himalayan griffons back into their habitat in Sivasagar district of Assam. These vultures were poisoned and found in a comatose state at Konwarpur on March 7, 2015, and were taken to IFAW-WTI run Centre for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC), where they were provided necessary veteriry care and released back to the wild on Thursday afternoon, a press release stated.

On March 7, the CWRC-MVS team led by Dr Bishwajit Boruah attended an emergency call from the Sivasagar Wildlife Division who informed that several vultures have been poisoned after they fed on a carcass. Dr Boruah rushed to the spot and found 20 dead vultures while nine others were in comatose. He along with the IFAW-WTI team rushed the vultures to CWRC for treatment. While one vulture died en-route to CWRC, others were given necessary treatment. Despite the CWRC team’s best efforts, three more vultures succumbed during the course of treatment.

Expressing concern, Dr Boruah said, “Until and unless the significance of vultures is understood by the locals, it would be very hard to keep this endangered species from going extinct.” This year alone, nearly 200 vultures have succumbed to carcass poisoning by locals in different parts of Assam.

“We are pleased and thankful to CWRC for going the extra mile in saving these vultures. Bringing these vultures back from the brink of death and releasing them in the wild is yet another feather in the wildlife conservation efforts of CWRC,” said ba Kumar Malakar, Divisiol Forest Officer (DFO).

A team of forest officials led by the DFO released the vultures jointly with the IFAW-WTI team in presence of locals at Kathpara in Sivsagar district on Thursday afternoon. Forest authorities also conducted awareness programmes for villagers in adjoining areas to make people understand the importance of vulture conservation.

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