Ooty: Nilgiris forest division administration has commissioned a “thermal drone” to track the movement of an elusive tiger that escaped from a snare in a farmland in Uyilatti village at Kotagiri near here on Saturday.
This is in the wake of the villagers there panic-stricken over the suspected tiger movement in and around the village limits. The villagers also claimed to have spotted another tiger with cub in the jungle fringes along the village limits.
As the camera trap set up by the foresters at wanton points in Uyilatti village failed to yield any dividends, the fate of the elusive tiger was still unknown. Hence, the foresters made arrangements to operate thermal drone to try their luck to trace and track the movement of the tiger in the village limits.
Stating that a private drone operator from Coimbatore was invited for the purpose, Mr. Saravanakumar, the assistant conservator of forests at Nilgiris forest division said, the thermal drone was operated on Monday evening over a stretch of one-km. The thermal drone operations will continue on Tuesday also, he added.
“Thermal drone is a technological intervention that hovers over the selected points to collect information on the movement of tigers in the area. The thermal drone collect signals from the carnivore moving around or from its hideout, as body temperature received from the carnivore is converted into images. By processing the images received from the thermal camera attached to the drone, the location of the tiger can be judged,” he said. The aerial surveillance using the drone is expected to give information on the movement of carnivores in the select area to chalk out the next plan of action if needed, he added.