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Protecting Forests With Crocodiles

India Takes the "Pitfall" Wildlife Management Approach

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Underfunded National Park and Forest rangers often struggle to keep humans from encroaching on sensitive wilderness areas forbidden to human impact. But maybe they could take a page from Indian forest rangers, who’ve taken a decidedly more aggressive approach: They’ve released captive-bred crocodiles into the water bodies of Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary to protect it from human impact.

The sensitive mangrove forests within Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary have been under threat from both unchecked human intrusion and illegal tree felling, which the locals regularly engage in to make room for rice paddies and shrimp farms. Rangers hope the 57 recently introduced “forest guardians” will stop violators dead in their tracks.

I’d say the chances of that happening are pretty good.

— Ted Alvarez



Trained crocodiles deployed as forest guards (ExpressIndia.com)