04 October, 2022 | 03:50 AM
Ailing tusker dies in Mayurbhanj forest
Baripada: There is no let-up in elephant deaths in the state as yet another tusker succumbed to a wound on its leg at Mashinakati reserve forest under Betanoti forest range in Mayurbhanj district, Monday. This is the third elephant death within a fortnight in the district after the death of two calves at Nato forest under Kaptipada forest limits under Bangiriposhi forest range. The tusker aged within 35 to 40 years was ailing for the last few days due to a deep wound it had developed on its front left leg. A team of veterinarians had conducted surgery on the leg, Sunday morning. However, it did not show any sign of improvement and died a few hours after the surgery, Monday. The matter came to fore after Forest officials recovered the carcass, Monday. It is suspected that the animal might have died due to wrong treatment and high dose of anesthesia administered to it before conducting surgery. Baripada DFO Santosh Joshi, deputy director Samrat Gouda of Similipal Tiger Conservation Project, ACF Rabi Narayan Mohanty, Ranger Ghanshyam Singh, Gaja Sathis, forest officials and members of green brigade were present. Environmentalists and animal lovers have alleged that the animal died of septicemia after infection from its wound spread to its whole body. The veterinarians have conducted a post-mortem of the carcass and sent the samples collected from the carcass for laboratory examination to ascertain the actual reason of its death. Reports said that the tusker was found roaming alone at Dumapada, Khadishola, Kanchannagar, Mashinakhati and Tungadhua areas under Betanoti forest range after getting separated from its herd. A thick plastic rope laid as a trap to ensnare wild animals for poaching was coiled around its front left leg when the animal was wandering aimlessly in the forests. A deep wound developed on its leg after it failed to free itself from the rope. The pachyderm failed to walk properly as the wound spread further and became septic giving out stink. Moreover, blood continued to ooze out from the wound. Betanoti forest officials noticed the animal during patrolling and informed their higher-ups. A team of doctors Brajaraj, Rudranarayan Mohapatra from Wildlife Trust of India, Indramani Nath from OUAT, Piyush Soren from Similipal Tiger Reserve huddled together and conducted a surgery, Sunday morning. However, the animal failed to recover and died. Former honorary wildlife warden Bhanumitra Acharya alleged that the animal was alive sans treatment but died within a few hours of surgery. He alleged that it died due to high dose of anesthesia saying it is essential to examine the age, weight, health condition and climatic condition before administration of anesthesia.