159 wild animals dead, 133 rescued in flooded Kaziranga National Park

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Guwahati, Jul 9 (PTI) In the worst ever floods in Assam's famed Kaziranga National Park in recent years, a total of 159 wild animals have died so far due to drowning and during treatment, while 133 others have been rescued till Tuesday, an official said.

The animal mortality has increased from 137 till Monday in the devastating second wave of floods that have affected the entire state.

The dead animals include nine rhinos, 142 hog deer, two sambar, a rhesus macaque and an otter.

A total of 22 animals have died during treatment and these include 17 hog deer, three swamp deer and one each of Rhesus Macaque and an otter pup.

The forest officials rescued 120 hog deer, three swamp deer, two each of rhino, sambar, elephant and scops owl and one each of Indian hare, Rhesus Macaque, otter, and a jungle cat.

Currently, 7 animals are under medical care while 111 others have been released after treatment, the official said.

The Park is experiencing the worst ever deluge in recent years with the previous large-scale devastation occurring in 2017 when over 350 wildlife died in the flood waters and in vehicle hits while migrating through animal corridors to the highlands.

Meanwhile, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on Tuesday that in a successful rescue mission carried out by the forest department of Sonitpur West Division and the public in Tezpur, an elephant which got separated from its herd was rescued and reunited with its herd within three days.

Out of the total 233 camps in the Eastern Assam Wildlife Division, 62 are still inundated till Tuesday evening as against 70 the previous day, the official said.

Forest department employees including security personnel stay in camps inside the national park to conduct patrolling for the protection of flora and fauna. PTI DG DG NN

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