Crucial Hangul Census To Begin From Tomorrow

SRINAGAR: At least 350 people affiliated with NGOs, Civil Society and others are set to begin a fresh census-2021 of the endangered Hangul or Cervus Canadensis Hangul from Saturday to know the exact population of the animal.

Pertinently, in the last three consecutive surveys, conducted after every two years, the population of Hangul has shown a bit upward trend. In 2015, the population of (Kashmir Stag), Hangul was 186 while in 2017 and 2019, it was 197 and 237 respectively.

The Department of Wildlife Protection is going to conduct Hangul Population Estimation (Census) 2021 in and around Dachigam National Park from April 3 to April 10, 2021.

Giving details about the census, Regional Wildlife Warden (RWW), Kashmir Region, Rashid Yahya Naqash told the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) that the process to know the exact number of the critically endangered Hangul is being carried out after every two years as the animal is not found anywhere across the globe else than Kashmir.

“The department is only providing logistic support in the census,” he said, adding that this year a total of 350 people, who are affiliated with different NGOs, Civil Society, mountaineers and others are being engaged in the process. “These people come voluntarily and the department only facilitates them to make the survey transparent,” he added.

The survey will be conducted on around 850 sq kms of landscape from Shikargah Tral to Wangath belt, he informed.

“The final data in the shape of the report will be finalized by the Research Officer. It would take nearly one to one and a half months after the census to come with the exact population of Hangul,” Naqash told news agency KNO.

“There are many things that will be seen during the census, which include the composition of the animal-like how many males and females are there to see how long the population of the animal will survive,” he said, adding that according to the previous censuses, the population of Hangul was almost recorded stable as there was not any huge difference in the number of Kashmir Stag.

“It is a scientific exercise to know the trend of how the population is behaving so that interventions are accordingly taken to ensure that the population of Hangul sustains. If Hangul is there, the whole habitat is there. If Hangul is not there, the whole habitat is gone. So it is a symbol of conservation in our area,” he added.

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