CHITWAN, Dec 5: The fourth census of the rare Royal Bengal tiger began today from the Chitwan National Park and Parsa National Park. The census is being held by considering the two national parks a single block.
The tiger census kicked off amid a special event at Sauraha of Chitwan National Park today in the presence of Minister for Forest and Environment Ram Sahaya Prasad Yadav and other high-level officials as well as the representatives from development partners.
Director General of the Department of National Park and Wildlife Conservation Dr Ram Chandra Kandel said that another separate block would be made by including Bardiya and Banke districts from December 15. The team will then conduct the tiger census in Shuklaphanta and Laljhadi.
The total cost of the tiger census is estimated to be around Rs 40 million and special attention is accorded for the security of the technicians, Dr Kandel said. The technicians involved in the tiger counting are insured for Rs 1 million and the Nepal Army personnel deployed for the security of the national park would also accompany the enumerators for their security.
It is said that a total of 120 technicians and assistants in addition to some elephants will be mobilised in Chitwan National Park for this purpose. The technicians and assistants deployed for the tiger counting would be stationed at 16 different camps there.
The camera trapping method will be used in the census wherein 360 camera traps are laid along the tigers’ path to capture their images as they move. The task is expected to be completed in almost two months.
The final results are expected to arrive within four months after the analysis of the images captured. This is the fourth time that Nepal is conducting tiger counting. Prior to this, the tiger censuses were held in 2008, 2013 and 2018.