The Nagarahole Tiger Reserve (NTR) will soon have in place a multi-pronged e-surveillance mechanism across it’s 643 sq km forest patch. This will make it the first tiger reserve in south India with such a mechanism.
Presently, the tiger reserve is equipped with as many as 400 camera traps installed by the Forest department. Another set of 200 camera traps were donated by CSS Corp as part of the corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative, apart from the ones installed by research organisations.
A web-based ‘Huli’ software is being used at the reserve to monitor wildlife and patrolling forest staff through GPS technology. |
This apart, CCTV cameras have been installed at Veeranahosahalli Gate, the main entrance to the reserve. With all these initiatives, the officials of the Forest department claim that NTR is the only tiger reserve in south India to have successfully adopted technology for forest conservation measures.
Officials also added that though forest patches in the Western Ghats use camera traps and Huli software, they do not use surveillance equipment unlike NTR.
Another software called ‘Hejje’, an improved version of the Huli software, is being used at the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary and Bandipur Tiger Reserve.
The software can be used by anti-poaching camp staff to update information related to animal sightings, water levels in tanks and ponds and information pertaining to poaching.
The cutting-edge technology enables senior forest officials in Bengaluru monitor movement of front line staff through Android phones.
Sidvin Core-Tech India Private Limited, a Bengaluru-based engineering firm, has installed Hejje software and CCTV cameras at NTR under CSR initiative.
NTR director R Gokul told Deccan Herald that Hejje software was being tested on 57 smart phones given to base camp staffers and that there were minor technical glitches to be addressed.
He added that CCTV cameras had been installed at Veeranahosahalli Gate on a pilot basis.
Issues to address
Gokul further said, “We have come across some problems such as poor visibility of number plate.
“We are trying to resolve such issues. CCTV cameras aid in monitoring vehicular movement. For, example gates close at 6 pm but in some instances vehicles have exited after 7 pm citing reasons such as bad road and elephant movement.”
He also added that CCTV cameras will be installed at all the seven Nagarahole Tiger Reserve gates.