Two rhinos have recently returned to the Laokhowa and Burhachapori Wildlife Sanctuary after almost a 40-year gap following a successful anti-encroachment operation.
About Laokhowa and Burhachapori Wildlife Sanctuaries
- The Laokhowa and Burhachapori Wildlife Sanctuaries are two centrally located Protected Areas (PAs) of Assam.
- They are located on the southern bank of the river Brahmaputra.
- In fact, though these two wildlife sanctuaries have two different names, they are eologically and geographically a singular entity.
- They are surrounded by many key Pas, like Kaziranga National Park to the east, Orang National Park and Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuaries to the west, Pakke-Nameri NPs to the north, and the rich reserve forests of Karbi Anglong to the south.
- They act as a connecting corridor for the migration of animals between Kaziranga and Orang National parks and hence, has been identified as buffer zones of Kaziranga Tiger Reserve.
- Landscape: It comprises of a mosaic of wet alluvial grassland, riparian, and semi-evergreen forests dotted by wetland and river systems.
- A unique vegetation of this sanctuary is the abundance of freshwater mangrove trees.
- There are many species of trees and medicinal plants in the sanctuary. Trees like simul, korai, ajar, hijal, etc. are found in the area.
- It is home to the Great Indian one-horned rhinoceros, tiger, leopard, wild buffalo, hog deer, wild pig, and elephants.
- The highly endangered Gangetic River Dolphins are still seen in the waters of the Brahmaputra River adjacent to these Pas.
- The numerous natural and perennial wetlands are functioning as breeding grounds for various kinds of local fish species and highly important bird species such as Storks like Adjutant, Lesser Adjutant, White Stork, Black Necked Stork, Black Stork etc.
Q1) What are Indian one-horned rhinoceros?
The Indian rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis) is found only in the Brahmaputra valley, parts of North Bengal, and parts of southern Nepal. It has a single black horn that can grow up to 60 cm, and a tough, grey-brown hide with skin folds, which gives the animal its characteristic armour-plated look. The Indian rhino is listed as vulnerable (better than endangered, worse than near threatened) in the IUCN Red List; it was earlier placed in the endangered category.