Friday, July 10, 2015

Activity Update May 2015: Navegaon-Nagzira

Mukund Dhurve         - Conservation Officer
Jivraj Salam                 - Field assistant
Salimkumar Dhurve    - Field assistant

·   6 water conservation activities – programmes to clean water holes in Kalagota, compartments  no. 107, 108, 109, 111, 112  
·      Assisted in fighting fire in forest on one occasion
·      Joined Forest Department staff on 6 patrols
·      4 community assistance voluntary work projects – programmes to clean area next to hand pumps at Mangezari, Jindatola, Bodalkasa, Bhajepar
·      2 anti-plastic programmes at Mangezari and Bagadhband
·      Organized 10 medical camps at which 267 patients got free treatment
·      Celebrated World Biodiversity Day on May 22 at Mangezari


Our team organized 4 community assistance programmes on May 14, 17, 06 and 18 to clear the area around hand pumps at Mangezari, Jindatola, Bodalkasa and Bhajepar respectively. Unemployed youths from Mangezari participated in all the programmes which were led by Mukund and Salimkumar.

Water had spilled over while people drew from the hand pumps and had stagnated, leading to proliferation of mosquitoes and insects. Our teams cleared the area, removing scum and organic growth and dug canals to drain away the water.

Our team joined the Forest Department in night patrols on the road from Mangezari to Kodebarra, Mangezari to Jindatola and Mangezari to Govindtola on May 7, 8, 11, 13, 14 and 23.  Patrolling was intensified in the area after a leopard was spotted on May 8 as officials wanted to monitor its movement and ensure that it was safe from poachers.

Night patrol, Kodebarra-Jindatola road

The area is known to attract poachers as power cables are strung on poles erected by the side of the road. In the past, there have been instances of poaching on this road when poachers used hooks and wires to draw power from the cables and killed animals by electrocution. Sometimes, wires are drawn several hundred meters into the jungle from the cables. At least one gaur and one leopard have been killed over the past year, using this method. Besides our staff, volunteers from a youth club at Mangezari also joined in the patrols. The youth club was set up with our assistance and is mentored by Mukund Dhurve.

On May 14 and 23 we organized day patrols during which our team cleaned waterholes in Kalagota and Compartments no. 56, 107, 108, 111 and 112. The water bodies were clogged with organic litter and dust. Our team removed the litter and de-silted the water bodies.

Cleaning the waterhole in Compartment No. 112
Day patrol, Compartment No. 107

 Cleaning the waterhole in Compartment No. 107

Cleaning the waterhole in Compartment No. 109

On May 20, our team was patrolling the jungle in Compartment No 56 when they noticed smoke in the forest around 0.5 km from Jindatola village. On checking, the team found that there was a fire which had already consumed around half hectare of forest. Our team, comprising Mukund Dhurve, Jivraj Salam and Salimkumar Dhurve, brought the fire under control and informed the Forest Guard Mr. Durrani stationed in the village. Photo below.

On May 9 and 15, Mukund, Salimkumar and Jivraj and 3 students from village conducted an anti-plastic programme at Bagadhband village in which they cleared plastic litter from the village and the Gram Panchayat Campus. The plastic litter has been kept in our Mangezari office and will be sent to Tiroda for recycling.

Collecting plastic litter near the entry gate of Nagzira Wildlife Sanctuary

Clean-up drive in Mangezari

The Government of Maharashtra has issued the buffer zone notification for the Navegaon-Nagzira Tiger Reserve. Following this, doubts have sprung up in the minds of villagers as to how they will be affected by the notification. Due to the doubts, some villagers are opposing the notification. To clear these doubts and misgivings, we organized a total of 8 awareness programmes during May in 8 villages – Navezari, Chorkamara, Umarzari, Shivangaon, Jambrapani, Sodlagondi, and Bhajepar.

On May 22, we organized a programme to celebrate World Biodiversity Day at Mangezari. Around 30 people attended this programme including 20 youths who were training to be guides, forest guards, villagers and our youth volunteers. The programme was conducted by Mukund who spoke to the youths about the significance of World Biodiversity Day and the importance of conservation. Photo below.


There were no environment education programmes in schools during May as schools were shut for the annual summer vacation.

Education van

There were no film shows on nature and wildlife conservation in May as schools were shut for the annual summer vacation.


There were 10 health camps in May.

Dr Bhasme examines a patient at our free health camp at Asalpani
Kodebarra: villagers at our free health camp

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