The Wildlife Wing of Odisha Government has sought expansion of two elephant reserves (ER) for increased protection and conservation of the large-bodied animals. A proposal to this effect has been submitted to the State Government.
Sambalpur Elephant Reserve which has an existing area of 426.91 sq km is recommended to be extended to 1812.74 sq km.
And, Mahanadi Elephant Reserve area has been proposed to be expanded from 1038.3 sq km to 1,405 sq km. The recommendation was based on suggestions of Asian Nature Conservation Foundation (ANCF).
According to 2017 Census, elephant population in Sambalpur ER was 92 while in the extended area it was 115. In Mahanadi ER, the number of jumbos was 240 whereas in extension region it was 323.
It is suggested that these ERs and the connecting landscapes between Sambalpur and Mahanadi have about 1,500 elephants which is 75 per cent of the State’s jumbo population and would create an ideal prospect for long-term conservation and protection of elephant population of the State.
About Asian Nature Conservation Foundation
ANCF is a small group of conservation scientists, planners, information managers and administrators working together to support the conservation of biological diversity in India.
ANCF was established in 1997 as a charitable trust by the eminent conservation scientist, Prof Raman Sukumar, Chair of the Centre for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. It is governed by a Board of Trustees chaired by Prof Sukumar. Mr Thomas Mathew, an experienced conservation planner and manager serves as the Executive Director.
ANCF has its headquarters at the Innovation Centre office of the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. While ANCF is constituted as an independent group of conservation professionals, in implementing its programmes it works closely with Government agencies, sister research and education institutions, civil society groups and community organizations.