Monday, July 25, 2016

Activity Update May 2016: Pench Maharashtra


Our team helping with waterhole maintenance
Pipariya - our team Mandar and Dilip explain the benefits
of organic farming to villagers

Pipariya - Dilip leads children on a nature trail
on World Migratory Birds Day

Sawara - children improve their computer skills through our programme

Waterhole being dug in buffer forest with help from villagers

Nature trail in Sillari - Dilip teaches children about plants

Team: Anoop Awasthi – Asst Director

            Mandar Pingle - Conservation Officer
            Bandu Uikey, Dilip Lanjewar – Field Assistants

    • One Jan Van Samiti formed by Bandu Uikey along with Forest Department staff in Sawangi village of Saleghat Range
    • Four voluntary work projects to clean waterholes at Sawara, Tuyepar hut, Khapa and Salai
    • One voluntary work project to repair waterhole in Bodkimatta in West Pench Range
    • One voluntary work project to construct water hole at Khapa
    • Bandu Uikey organized three demonstration for use of litmus paper to test water quality in waterholes
    • One anti-plastic programme in the buffer zone area of Pench Tiger Reserve at Ghoti
    • Field assistant Bandu Uikey and Dilip Lanjewar  joined Forest Department staff on anti-poaching patrols twice each
    • Dilip organized six nature trails in Ghoti, Pipariya, Sillari, Sawara, Kadbikheda and Wagholi while Bandu organized two nature trails in Ghatpendhari and Salai
    • Celebrated International Migratory Bird Day on 14 May at Pipariya Lake 
    • Celebrated International Biodiversity Day 2016 at Satpuda Foundation Center in Pipariya along with 23 farmers from Salai, Pipariya, Ghoti and Wagholi and in Ghatpendhari along with 18 villagers
    • Organized 6 medical camps at which 134 patients were treated
    • Assisted 3 youths from Ghoti to get employment with Forest Department and 1 youth placed from Ghatpendhari with forest department

On May 31, Bandu Uikey assisted Forest Department officials in setting up Jan Van Samiti in Sawangi village of Saleghat range. Village Eco-Development Committee (VEDC) President Mr. Pandhram and Forest Guards Mr. Ghasle and Mr. Rathod were present during the meeting with villagers. Bandu Uikey, along with the officials read and explained the GR regarding the Jan Van Yojana to 50 villagers who attended the meeting. Various issues regarding the nature of work that can be accomplished under the Yojana were discussed. The committee was formed with the unanimous consent of the villagers.

On May 20, Dilip Lanjewar led 15 villagers from Khapa in a voluntary programme to build a check dam. During the summer season, there is severe scarcity of water inside the forest area. This check dam will help retain water and thus ensure clean water supply for the wild animals. Satpuda Foundation encourages villagers to take up the responsibility to assist Forest Department staff with check dam construction via voluntary work project. A similar programme was organized on May 29 by Bandu Uikey in West Pench Range; 4 villagers from Salai volunteered in the voluntary work project.

On May 20 Dilip Lanjewar led 10 villagers from Sawara village in a programme to dig a waterhole 0.5 km away from the village inside the forest area. This will be useful to wild animals like wild boar, sambar deer, chital deer, leopards, tigers during the summer. During this season, these wild animals venture near the village in search of water and this can lead to man-animal conflict. By constructing a waterhole away from the village and inside the forest area, villagers aim to prevent these wild animals from venturing near human habitation and thus help prevent man animal conflict.
In West Pench, Bandu Uikey helped Forest Department staff to repair an existing artificial waterhole in Bodkimatta forest area with the help of 5 volunteers from Ghatpendhari village on May 18.

On May 6, Bandu Uikey demonstrated the use of litmus paper to check the water quality in waterholes to 9 staff of Forest Department in Ghatkukda area of West Pench Range. Bandu explained how to use litmus paper to identify cases of waterhole poisoning. Bandu again organized such demonstrations at Ghatpendhari on May 25 for 4 Forest Department staff members and at Markadoh (Salai) on May 28 for 3 staff members respectively.

Satpuda Foundation encourages villagers to patrol forest areas near their villages to keep a check on any illegal activity in these areas and thus protect the forests. Bandu Uikey led 6 villagers on patrol in Karudoh region of West Pench Range on May 13 and 5 villagers in Datizira area on May 8. Dilip Lanjewar also led 6 villagers from Khapa on a forest patrol on May 15 and then 5 villagers from Wagholi on May 29. No illegal activities were observed during these foot patrols.

On May 8, Dilip Lanjewar arranged a nature tail for children of Sillari in the forest adjoining the village. During the nature trail, Dilip introduced the children to many plant and tree species. He also helped them to spot birds like flame back woodpecker, coppersmith barbet, parakeets, drongo, orange headed thrush etc. The children were able to spot many small animals like palm squirrel, langurs, monitor lizard etc. Dilip provided detailed information about these birds and animals and urged children to strive to protect them and their habitat.

Similar nature trails were organized by Dilip on five more occasions in Pipariya, Sawara, Kadbikheda, Wagholi and Ghoti villages on May 6, 18, 28, 29 and 7 respectively.

Bandu Uikey organized two such nature trails in Ghatpendhari and Salai villages of West Range of Pench Tiger Reserve on May 28 and 29 respectively.

On May 21, Dilip led 9 children from Ghoti in a programme to remove plastic litter and help keep the village plastic free. Ghoti village lies in the eco-sensitive buffer zone of Pench Tiger Reserve and is declared a plastic free zone. While removing litter like plastic bottles, wrappers etc. with the help of village children, Dilip made people aware about the hazards of plastic waste in the Eco Sensitive Zone of Pench Tiger Reserve which is an important tiger habitat.

On May 3, Bandu Uikey who is also member of Pench Tiger Conservation Foundation attended a meeting in Mumbai, Maharashtra. The meeting was presided by Minister of State for Forests Mr. Sudhir Mungantiwar while senior staff members of the Forest Department for Pench Tiger Reserve were also present. During the meeting, issues pertaining to the status of functioning of VEDCs and conservation activities being undertaken were discussed.

On May 14, we celebrated International Migratory Bird Day. Our field assistant Dilip led 13 children from Pipariya village on a bird-watching nature trail near Pipariya Lake. Pipariya Lake is home to many migratory birds like Ruddy Shelduck, Spot billed Duck, Storks, etc. Dilip explained that water bodies like Pipariya Lake and nearby forest area are important habitats for these migratory birds. He also explained the importance of conservation of these habitats to the children. During the trail, they spotted various birds like Sandpiper, Pintail duck, lesser whistling Duck, Honey buzzard etc.

On May 22, the Foundation celebrated International Biodiversity Day 2016. In East Range, Conservation Officer Mandar Pingle and field assistant Dilip addressed 23 farmers from Salai, Ghoti, Pipariya and Wagholi about importance of conservation of biodiversity. Mandar and Dilip urged farmers to shun use of chemical fertilizers and to adopt organic farming practices. They also provided information on various schemes and training programmes pertaining to organic farming run by National Center for Organic Farming. During the discussion, the farmers’ doubts on organic farming were discussed threadbare. A similar programme was organized by Bandu Uikey in Ghatpendhari village which was attended by 18 farmers from nearby villages.

Environment Education

There were no classroom programmes as schools were shut for the annual summer holiday.
IT Education Programme

Satpuda Foundation has been running a programme to introduce computers to children living in the remote villages adjoining Pench Tiger Reserve in both Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh. The Foundation has installed computers in 3 villages and hired a local trainer to impart computer skills to the children. In Maharashtra, this programme is being implemented in Sawara, with computers provided by us.

Employment Cell

Education Van Programme

There were no film shows in May as schools were shut for the annual summer holiday.

Mobile Health Service (MHS)

There were 6 medical camps in May in which 134 patients were treated.

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