HAFLONG, Feb 27 � A remarkable increase in the population of terrapins in the Hajong Tortoise Lake in Dima Hasao has been noticed this year, said Hiranmay Bathari, DFO, East Division, Dima Hasao Forest and Environment Department, while expressing satisfaction over the people�s cooperation in the protection and preservation of these rare varieties of terrapins. Around 400 to 500 terrapins dwell in the Hajong Lake at present.
The Hajong Lake situated in the Langting-Mupa Reserve Forest, 2 km from the Khepre Road, is popularly known as the Tortoise Lake. It is a natural habitat of a few rare species of hill terrapins. Scholars from the Bombay Natural Science Society and college students visited the place for a study on the hill terrapins. They said that a concerted way should evolve by accommodating villagers and local leaders to save these rare species of terrapins.
With the return of peace in the district and due to the public enthusiasm with regard to wildlife preservation, the Department of Environment and Forests, Dima Hasao, organised a series of awareness camps and exposure trips to various parts of the State like Kaziranga, etc., by involving the people of villages adjacent to the Hajong Lake.
As in the previous year, the Dima Hasao Environment and Forest Department organised the Tortoise Festival at the Hajong Lake on February 21 to create awareness among the people of neighbouring villages on the endangered species.
NCHAC Executive Member Fleming Rupsi Shylla, in-charge, Dima Hasao Forest Division (E), was the chief guest. Addressing the gathering, Shylla said that the Autonomous Council would take more steps to make Hajong a tourist attraction in the district.
The programme was also attended by the ex-EM of the Council, JL Jidung, ex- chairman of the Autonomous Council Nirmal Maramsa, DFO, East Division, HM Bathari, DFO, SA Division, Borsing Bey, AFS, DFO FRS Tunu Langthasa, Range Officer, Maibang Range, Jeetendra Jidung, Range Officer, Langting Range, Rabindra Sengyung, and village gaonburah N Mujadar among others.