The Royal Manas National Park (RMNP), one of the many protected areas in Bhutan, has been seeing an increasing rate of wildlife rescues over the years. Although the wild animals within the protected areas of national parks and wildlife sanctuaries receive better protection from poachers and other dangers, however, the injured and wounded wild animals are in need of rescue and more care and protection.
RMNP was recently informed, by the Khempo of Nenshing borang Lhakhang, of two orphan animals found in the lhakang. RMNP then rescued a two-month-old female calf of a gaur and a fawn of a deer. According to reports, the orphans were separated from their parents either during an attack on the herd by predators which killed their parents, or, as park officials suspect, their parents might have been killed by poachers.
As is often a case wild orphans, they then strayed into the hu¬man domain. The calf of the gaur and the deer fawn, as per reports, had strayed and sought refuge in Nenshing borong Lhakhang. Offi¬cials said that the two orphans were fortunate to have wandered and chanced upon the monastery. “Had it been to the village, it would have been quite disastrous,” stated the report. The many stray dogs in the village would have wounded or killed them. The monastery had no stray dogs near its grounds and the compassionate monks contrib¬uted to the successful rescue of the orphans.
Once the juvenile lose their parents, many orphans, according to wildlife specialist, do not survive. “They die due to hunger,” said the official adding, if hunger does not kill them, the predators do since they become an easy target.
“They can be either killed easily by domestic dogs. Even if dogs don’t kill, people kill or try to raise them as pets. Wild animals do not survive too long in the human domain,” stated the forest officials.
Having lost its parents, the female gaur calf is said to have found its way to the monastery, tailing a domestic cattle herd that were taken into wild to graze. This, according to wildlife specialist, is not uncommon since juveniles of wild animals, especially the mammals, would try to merge with any herd that they come across.
In another incident, a barking deer was also rescued by the park. According to reports, the barking deer was found to be heavily under attack by a pack of hungry stray dogs. The incident was reported from the vicinity of Gelephu town by RBP personnel who reported it to the forest officials.
The rescue team found that the barking deer had been badly in¬jured on its left rear limbs. The rescue team treated the injured animal in the Gelephu Veterinary Hospital. The barking deer was successfully treated of its injuries due to the timely support and treat¬ment by the medical team.
Park officials say that wildlife rescue is a big challenge as the park is poorly equipped in dealing with such cases. For instance, the park neither has a proper rescue center nor the medical facilities and med¬icines required in the medical treatment and recuperation process of rescued wild animals.
The recuperating wild animals also need to be kept safely in a res-cue shelter for a successful release back to the forests. “But we lack both,” said the park official. The records with the park show that cases of injured wildlife that require rescue are filed in almost every month.