TRICHY: The district forest department, to reunite rescued infant slender-loris commonly known as thevangu in Tamil Nadu with its mother, conducted a search on the outskirts of Trichy on Friday. Slender loris, a diminutive forest crawler, is an class ancient primate that evolved long before the monkeys. It’s predominantly found in India and Sri Lanka.
The slender loris, which got lost on Thursday, was rescued by a local resident when it was trying to cross the road. Officials from the district forest department said that it should only be about two months old and that this was the first time they had spotted slender loris in Trichy after more than two years. It is said to be rare and listed under the Schedule I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act of India, 1972.
While K M Karthik, a resident of Ezhil Nagar, was on his way home on Thursday evening in his car, he found a small animal trying to cross the road behind BHEL’s deer park.
He then handed it over to the forest department at around 10pm. “Initially when I was in the car, I found it to be very peculiar and that’s why I got down to see what it was. I then took it to home, gave it some water and handed it over at the forest department office,” Karthik said.
Officials then tried to feed it in the night and the next morning, but the animal didn’t eat. Trichy district forest officer (DFO) D Sujatha said that the department tried to unite the infant loris with its mother as it was refusing to eat anything since it got lost. “It’s a nocturnal animal and since it’s very young we didn’t want to take the risk of leaving it out in the wild alone. Further, it’s difficult to feed it and keep it in our office,” she said.
After receiving information that two adult slender loris were found near the rescue spot, a five-member team, led by range officer, Trichy, M Balakrishnan along with Karthik had gone to the location to find its mother. “We went there under the assumption that the mother would come there in search of its kid. Due to heavy rains, we couldn’t continue our search for a longer time,” Balarishnan said.
Officials from the forest department said that they would search for its mother for a couple more days and if they do not succeed, they would hand it over to any zoo in the state.