KALPETTA: Wayanad has been experiencing a heat wave resulting in the fast drying-up of water resources. The forest department has started refilling the water holes in the jungle by bringing water from faraway water resources to quench the thirst of animals. The forest department in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu had been refilling the water holes by bringing water in tankers and setting up artificial ponds for the animals since December.
Though there were scattered summer showers, the heat wave that followed resulted in the drying up of many water holes in the 344,44 sq-km Wayanad wildlife sanctuary. A specially designed truck of the department which is fitted with water tanker is being used for refilling water. The summer showers early this month had brought some relief to most parts of the sanctuary. Wayanad wildlife warden P. Dhanesh Kumar told DC that they were forced to refill the jungle waterholes due to acute shortage of water. Now only the waterholes of Kurichiad range bordering Karnataka forest are being refilled.
“We are not pouring water into dried-up waterholes as it will vanish within no time, but only in holes where the water-level is alarmingly low,” he said. “The animal density of the jungle is high and if sufficient water is not made available, contagious diseases would spread among them,” he said. Now we have water in Ponkuzhy river at Muthanga. “The river may dry up within a few days. In the coming days, we will bring water from the Karappuzha reservoir,” he added. Experts say that the region has been witnessing high temperature during the last few days. Wayanad regional agriculture research station director Dr P. Rajendran told DC that the district was facing a heat wave which has resulted in the fast drying-up of water resources.