have sixth sense
By Priyanwada Ranawaka
The Yala National Park, Yala East National Park (Okala)
and Bundala National Park have been affected by the tsunami disaster.
But officials of the Department of Wildlife Conservation (DWLC)
say they have no evidence of animals being killed by the wave within
Director, Law Enforcement and Field Operations, H.T.S. Fernando
says, "Animals must have sensed the danger before it occurred
and withdrawn from those particular areas.
I visited the park on the 26th afternoon, we sighted no animals
in the coastal areas. But we spotted many animals on high ground,
like hilltops and cliffs. Other than dead fish, there were no carcasses
park habitat though has been destroyed, Mr Fernando said. According
to eyewitnesses, the tidal waves hitting areas of the park had been
over 40 feet high, coming in as much as two miles inland.
roads are badly damaged, making it difficult to carry out rescue
operations," Mr Fernando said adding that wildlife officials
are now working with the army to rectify the situation. The banks
of the Yala wewa are destroyed and the area is flooded. Patanangala
is the most affected and the bungalow there has been destroyed,
the park animals are safe has come as a huge relief to many wildlife
lovers. "Animals seem to have a sixth sense in the case of
impending disasters," affirms Jayantha Jayawardena, elephant
expert and managing trustee of the Biodiversity and Elephant Conservation
Trust, relating how people at Hambantota had told him how even dogs
in the area had behaved strangely before the tsunami.
were many reports of dogs howling and showing signs of distress
hours before the killer wave struck, he said. Veteran wildlife photographer
Nihal Fernando recalls that many years ago in the jungle a visitor
had seen a tremendous upheaval with animals fleeing before a mild
earthquake occurred. "All animals obviously have a sixth sense,"
seems land animals are not the only ones with sixth sense. Dr. Arunachalam
Kumar writing to the Natural History of South Asia network states:
observations confirmed over the years, mass suicides of whales and
dolphins that occur sporadically all over the world, are in some
way related to changes and disturbances in the electro-magnetic
field coordinates and possible realignments of geotectonic plates
the dates and plotting the locales of tremors and earthquakes, I
am reasonably certain that major earthquakes usually follow within
a week or two of mass beaching of cetaceans.
inter-relationship between the unusual 'death-wish' of pods of whales
and its inevitable aftermath, the earthquake, may need a further
impassioned and unbiased looking into."