Kenneth Anderson Nature Society
September 1, 2010 § 8 Comments
“Perhaps, you would like to come with me on one of my night prowls into the jungle. I am taking you to a place called Kundukottai, where there is a nice forest. Two ranges of hills converge there; and two streams coming from different directions join to form a large stream called the Doddahalla, but I have called it the Secret River…”
From A Night by the Camp Fire by Kenneth Anderson
Anderson goes on, takes his reader through Hosur, Denkanikottai and Anchetty into his favourite forests of Melagiris. He lights the camp fire and lies listening to the language of the jungle, sharing with his reader, all the gyan he had acquired over years. As much as 20 of the 57 Kenneth Anderson stories are based here in the Melagiri hills, nestled between the Cauvery and Chinar rivers. It is elephant country and contains two traditional elephant corridors. But today, poaching, cattle over-grazing and lantana have driven out most of the wildlife including the tiger from Melagiris.
A group of readers of Kenneth Anderson met at Aiyur, Tamil Nadu in June 2008 and formed Kenneth Anderson Nature Society (KANS) to explore the various ways in which they could contribute towards conservation in his favourite forests. KANS decided to take on the task of restoring the erstwhile glorious Melagiri through a mix of passive and active conservation activities like community interaction programmes, equipping the ground forest staff, field work to control man-elephant conflict, removal of invasive species etc. Also, in order to regulate cattle-grazing and poaching, KANS has been working hard along with the Forest Department and ANCF to get this region declared as a Wildlife Sanctuary. Scientific biodiversity surveys are conducted to gather solid proof to substantiate this sanctuary proposal. Lying in the vicinity of Bannerghatta National Park, Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary, Sanctuaries of BR Hills and Sathyamangala and forest patches that join the tiger reserves of Nilgiri Biosphere, Melagiri holds a very good potential for becoming a tiger habitat yet again.
To learn more about KANS, see the short video (in 2 parts) below. If you would like to join us, see our website. And I can lend my Kenneth Anderson omnibus if you want to read some awesome jungle-lore 🙂