Published on: November 23, 2021
Assam’s forest department is planning to collar at least five elephants in high-conflict habitats in the coming months.
WHAT ARE RADIO-COLLARS
- GPS-enabled collars
- Relay information about an elephants’ whereabouts
- Weigh roughly 8 kg and are fitted around the elephant’s neck
- According to a WWF blog, collaring includes identifying a suitable candidate (generally an adult elephant), darting it with a sedative, and fitting a collar around the elephant’s neck, before the animal is revived.
- Team also attaches an accelerometer to the collar to “understand what exactly an elephant is doing at any given time (running, walking, eating, drinking, etc)”.
HOW DOES RADIO-COLLARING HELP
- Help us track and study the movement patterns of the herd, across regions and habitat
- Serve as an early warning system, and if people know which direction an elephant is moving, they can prepare accordingly
- Main objective is long-term study of movement patterns
- All components are not available in India-have to be imported and are quite expensive.
- Can only be focussed on a senior elephant so there is less chance of growth
- Many times elephants are not able to keep the collar on