Friends, please help us to avert a serious threat to the largest surviving Elephant Population in India – the imminent severance of the Muthanga Elephant Corridor in Kerala.

The largest and potentially most viable population of Asian elephants is found in the mountains of the Western Ghats where the three Indian states of Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka meet.

Of a total population of about 2000 elephants surviving in Peninsular India in various fragmented habitat islands, the largest single population which may number over 1000 individuals is found in a near contiguous habitat extending over this 4500sq km tract.

The best forage is in the Tamil Nadu section but the elephants need to migrate to Kerala and Karnataka each summer when water and food become scarce in Tamil Nadu

Direct movement from Tamil Nadu to Karnataka is no longer possible because of clearing and development and so now the only way for the elephants to migrate from the east to the west in the dry time and return during the wet season is via the Mudumalai Tiger Reserve in Tamil Nadu, to the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala

But due to habitat fragmentation this route must now pass through a corridor which is only about 2.5 km wide extending from Mulehole in Karnataka to Muthanga in Kerala.

The major inter-state highway linking Bangalore with Calicut passing through this corridor is used by hundreds of vehicles round the clock. Recently a decision was made to relocate four different Kerala government departmental check-posts to within the corridor involving all manner of infrastructure - building complexes, housing, offices, toilets and dormitories for drivers, a fuel filling station and so on. The checkpoint clearance takes hours, so there would constantly be hundreds of lorries parked along the road on either side of the checkpoints within the forests preventing elephants from using the corridor. A suitable alternative site for these check-posts exists outside the forest.

The Wayanad Nature Protection Group (Wayanad Prakruthi Samrakshana Samati) has appealed to the world community to help prevent the severance of this critical corridor.