Buffaloes Move Into a Better Life

Buffalo_transportIFAW funded CWRC Staff walk buffaloes to their release area.

The New Year has gotten off to a good start for two buffaloes in India!

Two buffalo calves at the IFAW funded Center for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC) were rescued several years ago, the first in 2002 and the second in 2003. Both buffaloes came into rehab after severe flooding in parts of India that had left them orphaned.

Rehabilitation has been good to these two orphans and the CWRC staff decided that it was about time to allow the two a chance at life in the wild. A soft release area in the Saikhowa range of India was prepared more than a month prior to their arrival. As an added bonus, there is an anti-poaching camp with a watch tower within this range for around the clock surveillance.

The trip from CWRC to the Saikhowa range proved to be a challenge; it required three modes of transportation; truck, boat and foot. It must have taken some skilled maneuvering to get a large horned buffalo into a small river boat!

At the last stage of transportation, the staff used a palanquin to walk the buffaloes to their release area. Palanquin is really just a fancy word for a "portable, movable pen" (see photo attached, but is no easy exercise!

The last we have heard from the field is that the buffaloes have begun to come off of their sedation and are grazing in their new-found homeland. The two will remain in this soft release area for the next two years, to ensure for better survival.

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