Where is Sigur Plateau?
The Sigur Plateau, situated in the Nilgiri District of Tamil Nadu, is a vast plateau covering an area of 778.8 square kilometres (300.7 sq mi) and lies on the northern slopes of the Nilgiri Hills. The plateau connects several protected areas, including the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and is part of the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves.
Why is Sigur plateau in news?
A study recently warned that vultures in the Sigur plateau are at risk from poisoning events due to the availability of harmful NSAIDs (Non-Steroidal Anti Inflammatory Drugs) near their habitats. The dependence of vultures on cattle carcasses as food sources in the area could be a contributing factor to this. The study was conducted by the Centre for Wildlife Studies between 2018 and 2021. It highlighted the decreasing availability of expansive areas for vultures due to invasive plant species like Lantana camara and Eupatorium.
Is the Sigur plateau a wildlife corridor?
Yes. It is one of the most important wildlife corridors connecting the western ghats and the eastern ghats. The corridor is essential to sustain the genetic diversity of tigers and elephants in the region. The elephant population in the area is one of the highest in the country because of the Sigur plateau.
National Parks and Sanctuaries near Sigur Plateau
The Sigur plateau is enclosed by the Bandipur National Park in the northwest, the Sathyamangalam Wildlife sanctuary in the east and the Wayanad wildlife sanctuary in the west.
Tribals in the Sigur plateau
The Irular community tribals inhabit the Sigur plateau. They are a Dravidian ethnic group. They are spread across the states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Karnataka. Meaning of the word “Irular” means “dark people”. Their physical features and mannerisms are very close to the Onge tribal community. Onge is the Andaman tribe.
Also, the DNA analysis of a skeleton from the Indus Valley civilization showed close affinities with the Irular community.
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