Yala National Park that was closed for drought for one month re-opened today as scheduled. Until yesterday, there was doubt whether reopening of the park would be be postponed due to threats to the Wildlife Officers following Friday’s shooting that killed a poacher at Yala.
Local sources claim the family and close allies of the dead man threatened wildlife officers which subsequently led to deployment of Police Special Task Force (STF) to protect the Wildlife Offices located in Yala and the vicinity.
The incident has been an eye opener that poaching is carried out even in the protected areas. The recent incident occurred when Wildlife Officers engaged with a group of poachers at Kochchipathana which is located at the Yala National Park’s buffer zone.
It is reported that the wildlife officers opened fire when the poacher tried to shoot at wildlife officers. Two other poachers were arrested. Read the print edition of SundayTimes this weekend for more about the incident and experts’ opinions on how to address the issue of poaching in Sri Lanka.
To discover reasons behind Yala’s closure for drought read the following Sunday Times story ‘ ‘Yala Animals Get Drought Break’ -
Via Sunday Times