Ghariyal crocodiles released into Rapti river from CNP
RATNANAGAR, CHITWAN: Twenty-five Ghariyal species of crocodiles from the crocodile breeding centre in Chitwan National Park (CNP) were released into Rapti river on Friday.
The act of releasing crocodiles into the natural habitat was carried out differently this time, with the involvement of local Bote, Majhi and Musahar communities.
The crocodiles were named after the three communities in a symbolic way to help preserve the endangered species.
The initiative was carried out by the National Trust for Nature Conservation, Chitwan with support of Zoological Society of London in Nepal.
This innovative way of marking the crocodiles was carried out with the objective of increasing awareness of the locals in the protection and conservation of wildlife, said protection officer at CNP, Ved Bahadur Khadka.
Ghariyal species of crocodiles are now limited to Chitwan and Bardia only, and so far more than 1,000 Ghariyals have been released into the rivers. But only few have survived.
Latest census indicates there are only 198 of them in the rivers of Nepal. The crocodile breeding centre in CNP has 595 crocodiles at present, with a plan to release around 100 of them into their natural habitat this year.