Census of Eastern Swamp Deer starts in Assam’s Kaziranga

Guwahati, May 3 (IANS) A three-day exercise has begun in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park to monitor the exact number of Eastern Swamp Deer there, an official said Friday.

Park Director N.K. Vasu said that the monitoring has been done as part of a three-year research project on the Eastern Swamp Deer, a sub-species of Swamp Deer, and found only in Kaziranga.

“We have divided the five zones of the park into 20 locations and separate teams have been deployed in each of the locations to count the species as well as to monitor their activities,” said Vasu, adding that all the five zones – Kohora, Bagori, Burhapahar, Agaratoli and Biswanath – are included in the exercise.

The three-year long project on the Eastern Swamp Deer was initiated in 2010, after the park authorities came to know about the presence of the species inside the park in 2007. The project aims at having a thorough scientific study of the species.

Although there were about 681 Eastern Swamp Deer in Kaziranga in 2007, a census carried out in 2011 registered the presence of 1,168.

According to official statistics, there were 1,144 numbers of the species in Kaziranga till January 2012. However, some of them died in the three waves of floods in Assam last year and a census of the species carried out in November last year recorded 864 only deer.

The exercise will not only help ascertaining the number of the species, but as the first such scientific study also bring to light important details about the behavioural patterns and other aspects about their life.

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