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Post-Fani, drones to trace missing deers of Odisha sanctuary

Press Trust of India  |  Bhubaneswar 

The government on Tuesday decided to use drones to locate about 4,000 spotted deers who are missing from a sanctuary in district following Cyclone Fani, an said.

Most of the deers of the Balukhand-Konark sanctuary, which is spread over 72 square kilometres between and Konark towns, could not be located after the extremely-severe cyclone made landfall in the coastal district at a speed of about 200 kmph on May 3, the said.

"We could find only one carcass of a spotted deer so far after a inside the sanctuary. However, there is no trace of other animals," said A K Mohapatra, conservator of forest (PCCF), wildlife.

The deers generally come out of their hideouts at night in search of food, but the forest officials searched for the animals during daytime and could not find them, Mohapatra said.

Drone cameras will be used to locate the deers as it could be more fruitful, the said.

"Since the carcass of only one deer is spotted, we believe that others are alive, though not noticed during the search in daytime," Mohapatra said.

Forest officials said large number of cashew trees in the sanctuary might have protected the deers. The sanctuary had been stripped of its rich flora by the cyclone.

The sanctuary acts as a buffer for the coastal areas from the high-velocity winds, but it had been completely destroyed, said Bhimsen Das, a

The divisional had conducted a review meeting on Sunday to assess the damage and the next course of action. The sanctuary, where antelopes and jackals are also found, is now closed to the visitors.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, May 14 2019. 18:31 IST