Wild boars wreak havoc in settlements near Langtang National ParkGiving in to destruction caused by wild boars, fields have been left barren, say local farmers.
Wild boars have been wreaking havoc in the settlements of Khanjing in Gosaikunda Rural Municipality, Rasuwa, forcing villagers to leave their fields barren.
The villagers say wild boars enter their fields at night and destroy ready-to-harvest crops.
“We used to cultivate crops in four to five different fields but this year we have limited ourselves to just one field. We can’t sit guard in all the fields to chase away wild boars,” said Duktar Tamang, a local resident.
Farmers living in the settlements near Langtang National Park have been badly affected by the menace caused by wild boars.
Phinjo Tamang, a local resident of Thangsyap, says he has not cultivated potatoes for the last six years because of wild boar menace.
“This year, the animals are destroying crops like buckwheat and barley,” Tamang said.
According to the study performed by the Friends of Nature, an organisation working in the field of environment and conservation, an estimated 1,300 to 2,200 wild boars were reported in Langtang National Park in 2013. The study was conducted in the then Langtang, Buddim, Dhunche and Yarsa VDCs. According to the study, Langtang is home to the most number of wild boars in the region.
Villagers in Ghoda Tabela, Thangsyap, Gumba Danda, Langtang, Mundu and Singdum settlements have also left their farmlands barren.
“I own 14 ropanis of land. But I have cultivated crops in only four ropanis. I don’t have the resources to secure all my farmland from wild boar attacks,” said Gwang Tamang of Buddim. “No one has paid heed to our problems.”
Susma Rana, the chief conservation officer of Langtang National Park, said the number of farmers filing applications for compensation has increased of late.
According to her, the park distributed around Rs 4 million as compensation to 431 farmers in the last fiscal year.
“In the current fiscal year, we have already distributed around Rs 1 million to 142 farmers. Most of the farmers who received compensation are those whose crops were destroyed by wild boars,” said Rana.
According to Rana, the park provides compensation to farmers after evaluating the loss they incurred from wild boar attacks.
“The park has not adopted any other measures to stop wild boars from entering the farmlands. There are many herds of wild boars in the Langtang area and they cannot be easily controlled,” she said.
As per the existing legal provisions of the country, the family of a person killed in a wildlife attack is entitled to receive Rs 1 million. An individual who suffers from serious injuries in wildlife attacks will get a compensation of Rs 200,000 whereas a victim with minor injuries will receive Rs 20,000. Similarly, the compensation amount in case of crop depredation by wild animals has been doubled to Rs 20,000. To claim the compensation amount, the affected person has to file a formal request to the concerned authorities within 35 days of the incident.
Wild boars are not protected animals per se. The National Park and Wildlife Conservation Act only enumerates a total of 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.