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30 Chitwan rhinos dead in 9 months

File: A rhino found dead in Chitwan National Park

Chitwan, April 18

Altogether 30 rhinos have died in Chitwan National Park and adjoining areas in the first nine months of the current fiscal year.

Of them, 26 died of natural causes while four were killed by poachers.

Lately, a rhino was found dead on April 14, according to the information officer of the park, Lokendra Adhikari.

Last fiscal year, 26 rhinos had died, but the number is likely to increase significantly this year with three more months left.

Meanwhile, the park management has set up a committee to look into the causes of the death of the rhinos.

Reportedly, many rhinos die due to fighting among themselves, getting trapped after falling on a damp surface and attack by tigers.

The dense population of the protected species in the western region of the park is also believed to be a factor behind the rising numbers. Complete data from the recent census will verify if there is a need for relocation of the rhinos, says chief protection officer of the park, Ananath Baral.

Poaching was nil last fiscal year but increased this year. The park management is also working to check the poaching of rhinos, with some few poachers arrested.

The recent census showed 694 rhinos living in the park, an increase from 605 in the previous census in 2015.

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