Wild boar spotted in Annapurna Conservation Area after five decadesAn automatic camera trap installed at Madi Rural Municipality in Kaski has captured footage of wild boar in the area.
Conservationists working in the Annapurna Conservation Area have reported the presence of wild boars in the area after five decades.
Footage of wild boars have been captured on one of the camera traps set up in the Madi area of Kaski district.
According to the local residents of Madi, the last time a wild boar was seen in the area was 50 years ago.
Prakritika Sathiharu, an organisation working in conservation in Annapurna Conservation Area for the last two decades, had set up the camera traps in the highlands of Madi between mid-April to mid-June.
“We could not retrieve the footage earlier because we could not travel to the highlands because of the pandemic,” Raju Acharya, executive director of the organisation, said.
“We estimate a gap of 50 years between the sightings of wild boars in the area on the basis of the evidence presented by the officials at the Annapurna Conservation Area and the local residents.”
Officials at the Annapurna Conservation Area Project (ACAP) said the sighting of wild boars in the area is an exciting development.
“We will take initiatives to conserve wild boars. The ACAP will work with locals to save them,” said Utsav Neupane, chief at the ACAP Unit Conservation Office in Sikles.
Karan Bahadur Shah, a professor and also senior conservationist in Gandaki, said though the wild boar population of Annapurna Conservation Area was believed to have long died out, a small number of them might have survived.
“Their number might have increased due to the conservation efforts and curbs on wildlife hunting and poaching activities,” said Shah.
Yadav Ghimire, chairman of Prakritika Sathiharu, said wild boar sightings inside the Annapurna Conservation Area is a good sign.
“The presence of the wild boars suggests the increasing number of prey animals for wild dogs [locally known as Bwanso] and leopards,” said Ghimire.
The Annapurna Conservation Area is also a home to barking deer, himalayan gorals, tahrs, and monkeys.
“A joint effort is needed to conserve wild boars in the conservation area. We are yet to study the existence of wild boars and its effect on other species in the conservation area,” said Rishi Baral, chief at ACAP Unit Conservation Office in Jomsom.
In Nepal, wild boars are not protected animals. The National Park and Wildlife Conservation Act has recognised only 26 mammals as protected species. But it is still illegal to kill wild animals that are not on the list of protected species, as per the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act-1973.
The wild boar is listed as “least concern” on the IUCN red list of threatened species. Wild boars are found in various protected areas of Nepal including Chitwan National Park and Langtang National Park.