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17 Jan 2019, Edition - 1283, Thursday

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Coimbatore

Poaching of palm squirrels rampant at Singanallur Tank

Covai Post Network

After wild birds it now hunting of palm squirrels near Singanallur Lake. Volunteers of the Centre for Urban Biodiversity Conservation and Education (CUBE) spotted a few poachers hunting the squirrels on Tuesday. Last year, there were cases of wild bird hunting in the area.

According to the volunteers on a field visit to water the miyawaki plantation (a Japanese method of planting of different plants close to each other to develop ecosystem) by the lake side, three men were noticed in the area. One of them was on the tree collecting squirrels from the trap they had set and others were under the tree.

When the volunteers made enquiries, the three fled the scene with a large bag. A small one was left behind and the volunteers found that it had a few dead squirrels.

A volunteer said poachers were found killing larger wild birds like painted stork, spot-billed pelican, francolin and other wilds ducks and small animals like hare and mongoose for meat by setting traps in the areas around the lake.

Last year, nature enthusiasts during a birding activity spotted poachers involved in killing painted storks.

Coimbatore District Forest Officer N Sathish said field staff would be deployed to inspect the area for traps. There will be regular monitoring in that area, he added

“We got photographs of the poachers and will take stringent action under the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972,” Satish said.

He requested people and nature enthusiasts to inform the department if they noticed such offences and added that action would be taken immediately.

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