Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fresh sighting of bears at Gangtok

Fresh sighting of bear at Tathangchen prompts forest dept to set up a trap

GANGTOK, November 18: State forest department is maintaining strict vigil in bear wandering suspected areas even as fresh sightings continue to come from various parts of East Sikkim.
Today, bear sightings were reported from three areas of East Sikkim-Rumtek, Ban Jhakri falls and Tathangchen area of Gangtok.
The forest department received information of bear sighting from Tathangchen area, the same area where a juvenile bear had mauled a grass cutter on November 15.
A forest team led by DFO (Wildlife, East) Karma Legshey along with a team of Gangtok Sadar police rushed to the spot and immediately launched preventive measures. A cage has also been set up in the area in order to trap the sighted bear. Two armed forest guards are presently maintaining vigil on the trap.

Bear sightings were also reported from Rumtek area which was responded by the forest department. Jigmee Bhutia (Range Officer, Fhambongla wildlife sanctuary, east range) along with local territorial staff conducted enquiries at the spot but the bear was not seen again. The locals have been sensitized about the preventive bears by the forest team.
The third sighting was reported from Ban Jhakri falls where a territorial team from Gangtok range was dispatched. However, the bear could not be traced.
The forest department is planning to set up early morning hours patrolling in the area between 4 am to 6 am to trace the elusive bear.
Meanwhile, the cub which had separated from the mother bear at Rakdong Tintek yesterday has gone back to the forest areas. However, the forest personnel are still maintaining vigil in the area.

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