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Third hand-reared rhino gives birth in Manas National Park

 

The Indian Express, Mumbai,, July 08 2013

Another hand-reared one-horned rhino has given birth to a healthy calf in Manas National Park in Assam. This is the fourth such calf to be born after a number of rhinoceros were shifted to the park as part of India Rhino Vision 2020. It is the third hand-reared female rhino in the country to give birth in the wild.

The calf was first sighted by a team of forest staff and IFAW-WTI monitoring members on Thursday afternoon at the Bansbari range in Manas national park in western Assam. The park has just been brought back to shape after it was devastated during a decade-long militancy.

Jamuna, the female rhino, was rescued as a three-month-old calf during the high floods of June 2004 in Kaziranga National Park, following which it was shifted to the Centre for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC), run by by the Assam Forest Department and International Fund for Animal Welfare - Wildlife Trust of India near Kaziranga. In 2007 Jamuna — also known as Rosy — was shifted, along with another female calf Ganga, to Manas National Park. The reintroduction of rhinos to Manas is an initiative of Bodoland Territorial Council, the forest department and IFAW-WTI.

Jamuna became the third hand-reared rhino in the CWRC to give birth after being translocated to Manas, while a fourth calf was born to a rhino who grew up in the wild in Pobitora wildlife sanctuary near Guwahati.

"The rehabilitation programme is a 100 per cent success story as all the three hand-reared female rhinos in Manas have become mothers," wildlife biologist, WTI deputy director and head of CWRC near Kaziranga, Rathin Barman said. Two other females, Ganga and Mainao, both hand-reared after being rescued in Kaziranga, had given birth in March and June this year, Barman added.