Q: Has Yettinahole river project in Karnataka approved by Environment department of both state and union government? Will wildlife will be affected by this ? Is Yettinahole located in an elephant corridor?

Asked by Rajaram Rao

Answer by Praveen Bhargav, Managing Trustee, Wildlife First:

No. They have categorized this as a drinking water project to avoid Environment Clearance.

Yes, wildlife will be affected by this. The site is located in a sensitive area of the Western Ghats. Several reserved forests including Murkangudda, Kagneri, Kempuhole, Kadumanehole and Kanchanakumari reserve are in immediate vicinity of the project site. Kempuhole reserve forest is the only known location from where the Gundia Indian frog (Indirana gundia) is reported. It is classified as critically endangered and is part of the species recovery list of the MOEF, India. This forms a critical animal corridor between Pushpagiri Sanctuary in the south to Kudremukh National Park and Charmadi forests in the north. Lion-Tailed Macaques have been recorded in Pushpagiri Sanctuary, Subrahmanya RF, Sakleshpur RF and Yesalur RF in a study by Dr Ullas Karanth in 1985 and H.N.Kumara & A.Sinha in 2009.

The project lies within 10 kilometres of Bisle Reserve forest which is notified as part of Mysore elephant reserve.

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