Two Himalayan black bears killed by poachers

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Kohima, Aug 19 (UNI) Unidentified poachers killed two Himalayan Black Bears inside the walled Rangapahar Wildlife Sanctuary near Dimapur and took away the gall bladders of the bears.

Official sources said here today that the newly-walled Rangapahar Wildlife Sanctuary, covering an area of 176 hectares area, is scheduled to be officially inaugurated on August 28.

The poaching incident occurred in the early hours yesterday, just ten days before the sanctuary was to be inaugurated.

The poachers had climbed the wall of the sanctuary near the front gate, as bloodstains were seen on the wall.

The poachers later poisoned the bears and stabbed the animals with machete-like sharp weapons to kill them.

After killing the bears, they slashed their stomachs and took away the gall bladders.

Primary investigations revealed that the bears were killed between 0100 hours to 0200 hours on Monday and the workers of the sanctuary discovered the carcasses at around 0600 hours.

Range Forest Officer Obed B Swu told mediapersons that an off-white coloured substance in containers was recovered inside the sanctuary, which is suspected to be the poison given to the bears.

He confirmed that the bears were killed only for the gall bladders which are used for making medicinal potions.

However, he confirmed that the gall bladders were also contaminated by the same poison which was administered to kill the bears.

After the death of the two bears, which were recently brought from Kohima, the Rangapahar Wildlife Sanctuary presently has six Himalayan Black Bears, six Sambar deers, four langurs, three foxes, three Hornbill birds, a giant owl and one clouded leopard.

The sanctuary also includes a Rescue Centre that houses a Hollock Gibbon, a Slow-Loris, a terrapin (fresh water turtle), three aquatic birds and a pair of owls.

Nagaland has no Forest Guard in the state and the Rangapahar Wildlife Sanctuary remains unmanned.

On Independence Day, Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio had declared to raise a 100-strong Armed Forest Guard in the state for the protection of the animals in the Wildlife Sanctuaries, National Parks and Reserved Forests.

Meanwhile, various NGOs, village councils and students unions have raised voices against the poaching of wild animals and birds.


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