Muthuvan tribe

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According to the Tamil Nadu Forest Department, Muthuvan tribe will be part of Nilgiri Tahr conservation project.

About Muthuvan tribe

  • These people live on the border hill forests of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.
  • They speak slightly two different dialects and call each other Malayalam Muthuvan and Pandi Muthuvan.
  • They are animists and spirit worshippers and also worship the forest gods,
  • They believe that the spirits of their ancestors are to be the first migrants to the hill forests.
  • They are known for coexisting with the wildlife with their traditional knowledge.
  • These tribal people follow a unique system of governance called the 'Kani System'.
  • Under this system, each village is headed by a 'Kani', who is responsible for the administration of the village.
  • They have expertise in traditional medicines which are very effective and these medicines and the medicine men are confidentially preserved and passed on to the generations.
  • Occupation: Agriculture is the main occupation of these Muthuvan tribes, producing quite a number of products like ragi, cardamom and lemon grass.

What is Project Tahr?

  • Under this project the Tamil Nadu government plans to develop a better understanding of the Nilgiri Tahr population through surveys and radio telemetry studies
  • Reintroduce the Tahrs to their historical habitat
  • Address proximate threats.
  • Increase public awareness of the species
  • Time period: The project is to be implemented for a 5 year period from 2022 to 2027.

Q1) What is Nilgiri Tahr

It is a species of ungulate, or hoofed mammal, that is native to the Western Ghats of southern India. It is a type of mountain goat and is known for its distinctive appearance and its preference for high-altitude habitats.

Source: Forest Department banks on native wisdom of Muthuvan tribe for Nilgiri Tahr conservation