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“No selfies, with animals” new advisory from forest department

As humans recede to their homes in the lock-down period, Wild animals are venturing more to human habitats. Increased sightings of wild animals have been reported from villages near to forest boundaries in Assam.

This had made Assam forest dept to issue an advisory of special relevance during Covid period. Forest guards report the behavior of animals had changed after lock-down. The never-ending rumbling of Vehicles passing through the forest areas had stopped all of a sudden and the din of neighboring human habitats is silenced making the animals curious. This makes the animals come out of the forest to find out the reason for the sudden peace in the human domain. On March 24, a rhinoceros emerged out of Pobitora  Wildlife Sanctuary (PWS), traveling at least 25 km to Khetri in Sonapur.

Wild animals venturing into human habitation is not a new phenomenon — at least in Assam, in which 34.21 percent of the total geographical area lies under forest cover. The forest department had issued an advisory in case any came in to contact with wild animals. It requests to immediately inform the forest office or nearest police station in case of a sighting, and to maintain a safe distance with the animal. Taking selfies with the animal is a definite no, as the wild often has an unpredictive behavior.

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