Kaiga forest area in North Karnataka is around India’s premiere Nuclear power plant in the Western Ghats. It is here that for the first time ever, the rare Lion tailed macaque were spotted for the first time.
Lion tailed macaques are an endangered species of primate found only in the Western Ghats of India. Even here, less that 4000 survive mostly in Silent Valley forests of Kerala. It is therefore a great news that the primates were spotted in a habitat that is not their usual home.
K Puttaraju, scientific officer at the Kaiga nuclear plant, said it was spotted in Kaiga Harur forest in the Western Ghats.
“Its rich biodiversity with wetlands, woodlands and water bodies, makes Kaiga an ideal habitat for threatened birds and animals,” he said.
He said though there were rumours of villagers having spotted them a month ago, but there was no evidence.
“Now we have photographic documentation. Macaques reproduce at the rate of once in three years and only the dominant female reproduces. The combination of low birth rate and advanced age at the time of birth makes it hard for their population to grow. They do not live in plantations and the destruction of their natural habitat has resulted in a drastic decrease in their numbers in the Western Ghats,” he added speaking to TOI.
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