Arikomban moves to deep forest in Periyar, radio collar facilitates tracking

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Idukki: The officials from the Forest Department released the wild elephant Arikomban into the Periyar Tiger Reserve in Idukki at around 4:30 am on Sunday. Upon their return, the officials informed the media that they have already begun receiving signals from the radio collar that was placed around the elephant's neck.

Assistant field director of Periyar Tiger Reserve Shuhaib said that Arikomban is completely healthy and it sustained no injuries. The elephant was released into the forest only after it regained consciousness. According to the signals, Arikomban has moved into the deep forest.

A GPS tracking collar is tied around the elephant’s neck in order to track its movement. The officials said that the radio transmitter has been kept inside a durable and waterproof chip affixed on the leather-like collar. The signals will be received via satellite at the tracking centre set up in the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary.

The mission to translocate Arikomban from Chinnakanal was launched on account of the increasing cases of the elephant’s attack in the region. A team under veterinary surgeon Dr Arun Zachariah fired at least 4 shots to tranquilize Arikomban. The wild tusker was guided into a truck by four kumki elephants and later transported to Periyar sanctuary.

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