Saturday, July 5, 2014

Hares in the Arekere Reserve Forest

The cleaning session at Arekere (Dorsani Palya) Reserve Forest on Sunday 29th June 2014 had many of the morning walkers join the effort. The extra hands really helped the volunteers (who have pledged their support to the clean-up campaign) do more than they had expected. 

However it was noticed that apart from plastic, a lot of rubbish, including wet waste, gets thrown from the road, over the compound wall. People are using this like a road side garbage dump! For a proper clean-up of this part, the group decided to engage paid labour or rag pickers.

The forest is known for its birds, butterflies and other insects. But mammals? The highlight of the morning, and the most surprising find was the spotting of wild hares in the forest. Prasanna, one of the volunteers wrote to the PNLIT email group, "Yes you can call it a miracle that these beautiful creatures are still surviving despite all odds". 

With stray dogs frequenting the area, Prasanna wonders how long the hares will survive. The Forest Department and others will need to make a focussed and concerted effort to keep the dogs out and preserve the habitat for the hares so that they can breed. In the huge 130-acre area, surely if there is a will, it should be possible, with the support of the Forest Department.  

We need to go beyond making the forest a beautiful place for walking and exercising. We need to save the hares that have made this their home. If you have any ideas on how the hares can be protected and would like to join the effort, please email  Prasanna Vynatheya .

Read about a rescued hare on the wrrc website here.

1 comment:

Prasanna Vynatheya said...

I have seen hares in a few of my friends' farms and on the roads between places around Bangalore and a little further away. My observations are:
* It's only a matter of time before the hares disappear from Revenue lands, patta lands (agricultural) and Reserve Forests which are situated on the fringes of the ever expanding village or town or city.
* The reasons are - hunting by humans and killing by dogs. Other reasons are loss of suitable feeding and burrowing places, this is brought about by extensive picking of bushes and cutting of small plants and trees for firewood or over grazing by goats etc.
* I believe that every farmer who sees hares on his property must and should think of ways of protecting them by growing very thorny bushes at some remote corner of the plot thus giving the hares a chance to at least raise their young. Of course there are more things to do as well.