Fragmentation of Rajaji National Park:
Rajaji National Park is attempting to secure corridors for its wildlife, elephants in particular, though this continues to be a cumbersome and challenging task. These corridors have been fragmented by villages, by a national highway, water channels, railway tracks, transmission lines and even an Army ammunition dump. These corridors are being shrunk and fragmented, posing a grave threat to tigers as well elephants.
An elephant moves long distances and as it is large in size, a corridor that is adequate for elephants is suitable for every other wildlife species in the forest such as tigers, deer or other smaller animals. Uttarakhand has a sizable population of both tigers and elephants, and therefore wildlife corridors hold significance, particularly as it is right beside Jim Corbett National Park, which continues to be a habitat with one of the densest population of tigers in India.
Corridors are valuable tools for wildlife conservation, as they enable animals to connect to different landscapes. Fragmentation of such corridors could have harmful effects in the long run. Some such effects include genetic isolation, fragmentation of habitat within the same forest and increasing levels human-elephant conflict in adjoining areas. Most of the wild animals and elephants have been threatened mainly by the railway track and national highways, which pass between the forests. As the city of Rishikesh is located right between the East and West areas of Rajaji National park, the path of many wild animals is obstructed. A solution to this problem that is being worked on, is building an overpass for traffic so animals can use a corridor to travel from one side to another. This is likely to take many years, but will hopefully be a helpful stem towards wildlife conservation in Rajaji national park.
Article: Wildlife corridors and Asian Elephants (Elephas maximus): Lessons from Rajaji National Park, North-West India. Author: Ritesh Joshi, Rambir Singh
"The Tribune, Chandigarh, India - Prime Concern." The Tribune, Chandigarh, India - Prime Concern. N.p., n.d. .
Poaching is illegal hunting, killing or capturing of wild animals for illegal gain or trade. Many animals are captured and killed and their body parts are sold for medicinal purposes, or fur for clothing, or ivory for carvings etc.
In Rajaji national park, there have been instances of elephants being poisoned and their tusks chopped off with axes. The largest populations of elephants in India are found in the Northeast and southern states. Poaching in these areas have been at such a large-scale that the male to female ration has dropped to 1:25, as only males have tusks...