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Biodiversity & Environment

Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary

  • 21 Oct 2019
  • 4 min read

Recently, due to the anthrax, two Asiatic Water Buffaloes died in the Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary.

Asiatic Water Buffalo

  • The Asiatic Wild Water Buffalo is scientifically known as Bubalus Arnee is known to be found in the Central Indian Forests and is mostly restricted to the states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.
    • Recently, it was found in the forests of Maharashtra after which the Maharashtra Government declared the Kolamarka forest area as a conservation reserve for the Asiatic Wild Buffalo.
    • Asiatic buffalo has the widest horn span among all bovids found globally.
    • The wild buffalo is mainly found in the alluvial grasslands, marshes, swamps and river valleys. They are generally found in areas that have plenty of water holes and resources.
  • The Asiatic wild buffaloes are of enormous economic significance as they are the direct ancestors of all the breeds of the domestic buffaloes.
    • However, over time their population has decreased at an alarming rate because of various reasons such as poaching, loss of habitat and breeding with domestic buffaloes.
  • Protection Status:

Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary

  • Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary has the highest density of one-horned rhinos in the world and second highest concentration in Assam after Kaziranga National Park.
    • It is often called ‘Mini Kaziranga’ due to similar landscape and vegetation.
  • The wildlife sanctuary is home to endangered one-horned rhinoceros and the other mammals such as Leopard, Leopard cat, Fishing cat, Jungle cat, Feral Buffalo, Wild pigs, Chinese pangolins, etc.
  • About 72% of Pobitora Sanctuary consists of wet savannah of Arundo donax and Saccharum. The remaining area is covered by water bodies.
    • Water hyacinth (an invasive aquatic plant) is a major problem to the area especially to waterfowl, as it forms thick mats on the water surface.
  • There are 5 national parks in Assam namely,
    • Dibru-Saikhowa National Park,
    • Kaziranga National Park,
    • Manas National Park,
    • Nameri National Park,
    • Rajiv Gandhi Orang National Park.

Anthrax

  • It is a serious infectious disease that is caused by a bacteria known as Bacillus anthracis.
  • Although it is rare but it can sometimes become fatal for humans if they get infected with anthrax when they come in contact with infected animals or contaminated animal products.
  • It is characterized by symptoms like blisters on the skin, chest pain, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever.

Source: TH

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