Drone surveillance to trace missing deer underway: PCCF

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Puri: The drone surveillance to trace out the missing deer in Cyclone FANI-ravaged Balukhand Sanctuary is underway.

This was informed by the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) Wildlife Ajay Mohapatra on Thursday.

The decision of mobilising drone system was taken up by the State government after over 4,000 spotted deer besides some jackals and hyenas had gone missing from the sanctuary as Cyclone FANI battered coastal areas of the State.

He further stated that thatched shelter structures to protect deer from the summer heat and manual filling of dry water bodies will be carried out before the onset of monsoon.

This apart, the Forest Department has also decided to buy 50 acres of land to cultivate food crops for Aska black bucks. The project will be initially implemented on one-acre of land on a pilot-basis, Mohapatra added.

Earlier on Wednesday, the forest department spotted some deer while grazing in Balukhand sanctuary through the cameras set up in the meadows.

The sanctuary spread over an area of 72 km², is located along the Bay of Bengal coast, between the towns of Puri and Konark. The sanctuary includes sandy beaches, coastal dunes, groves of introduced Casuarina trees planted in 1916-17 and cashew plantations.

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