Bhubaneswar: A seven-day webinar workshop was organized recently to mark the World Elephant Day.
Themed ‘Understanding and protecting the majestic National Heritage, the Elephant’, the purpose of the workshop was to create awareness on different issues related to elephants, with special focus on the scenario in Odisha.
An initiative of Bhubaneswar-based organization ‘GROW with Nature’, the online workshop was held from August 12 to 18. Speakers from different spheres of work like forest department, research organizations, social and wildlife activity, journalism and students shared their experiences and put forward suggestions to create a harmonious co-existence among humans and elephants.
Conducted by ‘GROW with Nature’ founder and chairman Gayatri Devi, the workshop was attended by several thousand viewers from different states of the country.
The topics of discussion on different days were – ‘Understanding the majestic pachyderm’, ‘Managing migratory elephants in Nilgiri-Balasore’, ‘Conserving elephants in Odisha’, ‘Human-elephant conflict mitigation measures’, ‘Health and well-being of largest land mammal, the elephant’, ‘Management of distressed elephant’ and ‘Role of public in protecting the National Heritage’.
Speaking on the scenario in Odisha, Lokayukta Odisha member Dr Debabrata Swain said that there were 14 identified elephant corridors in the state. He stressed on the immediate need to restore their habitat and the importance of establishing more wildlife sanctuaries in connecting the corridors.
He emphasized on capacity building of villagers, farmers, increasing trained ACF/FRO, veterinary staff, tranquilization experts, radio collaring experts etc. and urged further research activities on corridor studies and elephant census methodology.