BANGALORE: The state could very soon have its third crocodile park near Almatti in Bijapur district.
The Forest Department is ready to set up the park near Almatti due to the presence of fresh water crocodiles in Krishna river.
Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) Ajay Mishra told Express, “We are ready for it if a proposal comes from either the district administration or local legislators.”
Reacting to this, former minister and sitting BJP MLA from Mudhol, Govind Karjol said he will submit a proposal to the Forest Department in this regard.
He said thousands of tourists throng Almatti reservoir every year and the proposed crocodile park will become another tourist attraction in the district. Crocodiles stray into human habitat situated along the Krishna river during monsoons in search of prey. There are instances of crocodiles attacking cattle and also injuring residents.
“Keeping them (crocodiles) at one place will help in their breeding as well as attract visitors,” Karjol said.
He said that a few days ago, a crocodile measuring over eight feet, strayed into human habitat. However, it was captured by residents and released into the river, Karjol said. “Crocodiles are frequent visitors to the villages situated on the banks of Krishna river. But it never makes news,” he added.
Mishra said the entire Krishna river belt starting from Maharashtra is known for its large crocodile population. “In my view, a place near Almatti is ideal to set up this park,” Mishra said.
He said the Forest Department does not face financial crunch to set up the park and it may require 8-10 acres to start the park. The state at present has crocodile parks in Dandeli in Uttara Kannada and Ranganathittu in Mandya.