CWRC is the only facility in India where orphaned and/or injured wild animals of several species are hand-raised and/or treated and subsequently returned to the wild. Strategically located in Borjuri village adjacent to the Panbari Reserve Forest near Kaziranga National Park in Assam, the centre attends to a wide range of wildlife emergencies resulting from natural or anthropogenic causes. Since it was launched in 2002, the centre has handled close to 4500 animal cases, with nearly 60 percent released back to the wild.
Kaziranga National Park in the northeast Indian state of Assam is a world heritage site, notified by the UNESCO in 1985. The park holds the world’s largest population of the greater one-horned rhinoceros and provides refuge to a large number of wild animals including the endangered Royal Bengal tiger and the Asian elephant.
Flanked by the Brahmaputra river towards its north, Kaziranga lies in the river’s flood plain and experiences annual flooding during monsoon. Although, these annual inundations play a significant role in maintaining the fertility of the habitat, they also regularly cause large scale temporary displacement of wild animals.
With an average altitude of 60m, the park offers very little escape for animals during the floods. Although man-made highlands offer some relief to animals, many get washed away. Animals also get displaced in their attempt to escape to higher ground, with young ones who are unable to keep pace with their parents often getting left behind.
Beyond the park boundary, displaced animals are susceptible to conflict with humans and sometimes fall prey to poachers. Many also fall victims to road accidents, especially along NH37 that separates Kaziranga’s low-lying flooded grasslands from the wooded highlands of the Karbi Anglong hills to the south. Displacements also arise due to conflict with humans and animals being stranded in human-modified environment.