Celebrating life of Raja: A tribute to an ace Super Sniffer | WWF India

Celebrating life of Raja: A tribute to an ace Super Sniffer

Posted on 16 July 2019
Super Sniffer "Raja"
© TRAFFIC
Raja, a ten-year-old wildlife sniffer dog trained under TRAFFIC’s programme in India succumbed to old age on 10 July 2019. Raja was a male German Shepherd trained at 23rd Battalion of Special Armed Forces, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh and belonged to the second batch of TRAFFIC’s pioneering wildlife sniffer dog training programme in India. Raja was deployed at Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve (TATR), Chandrapur, Maharashtra since 2010 and had retired in 2016 after completing his age of active service. 
 
During his deployment, Raja had helped in solving and tracking numerous wildlife cases that lead to the arrests of at least nine alleged poachers and seizure of various tiger parts among other wildlife. Raja's role in solving tiger crime cases some of which involved tracking down the carcasses of poached tiger inside thick forests, has been commendable. Raja was a highly skilled sniffer dog who shared a strong emotional bond with his handlers. 
 
After retirement, Raja continued to live a comfortable life with his handlers MA Ansari and Pravin Kumar at TATR. Raja will be sorely missed by the handlers, Maharashtra Forest Department and by us at TRAFFIC, India Office. 
 
Wildlife sniffer dog training programme, popularly called Super Sniffers, was started by TRAFFIC in India in 2008 with support from WWF-India. Since then, 66 wildlife sniffer dog squads have been trained successfully and deployed in 19 states.

WWF-India & TRAFFIC India initiated the much needed training of sniffer dogs and their handlers in 2008 in India to help stop illegal wildlife crimes. Today there are 66 such superheroes protecting our wildlife. These canines are trained to detect tiger bone and skin, leopard bone and skin, elephant tusk, bear bile and other illegal wildlife products. Your support is needed to help us train more of these amazing Super Sniffers. SUPPORT NOW!
Super Sniffer "Raja"
© TRAFFIC Enlarge
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