Hussain Kalpoor

Hussain Kalpoor was a wildlife recuer, forest watcher, and a snake catcher who was indeed known as Steve Irwin of Kerala. As a charismatic wildlife enthusiast and animal behavior expert with excellent knowledge of rough terrains of Western Ghat mountains of Kerala, Kerala Forest Department hired him as a forest watcher.

Hussain Kalpoor died in September 2022 due to wild elephant attack while exercising his duty at Palappilly, Thrissur. In a courageous attempt to drive away a herd of wild elephants encroaching human settlements using two kumki elephants, he had succumbed to death. His unwavering commitment to safeguarding both human and animal lives in an area like Palappilly which is prone to wild elephant encounters. He was working as a watcher of Rapid Response Team  (RRT) of Forest Department.

Hussain Kalpoor was born in Kalpoor near Karamoola, a border town between Karassery and Koodaranji panchayaths. Koodaranji, a hilly panchayath of Kozhikode district which is at the foothills of Western Ghat mountains where human animal conflict is a regular phenomenon. Growing up in such a prestine environment, it’s likely that Hussain’s early life was deeply influenced by nature and wildlife surrounded him.

Hussain Kalpoor kept a very good relationship with his fellow people and was very popular in Koodaranji, Karassery, and Kodiyathur panchayaths. Starting his wildlife rescue journey by fearlessly catching snakes, including the formidable king cobras and quickly gained name for his bravery and expertise. People from neighbourhood used to call him if they spotted a snake. Some people called him as “Vava Suresh of Kozhikode”.

He has worked with Arun Zacharih, a prominent veterinary surgeon at Forest Department of Kerala. Mr. Zachariah was the man behind mission Arikomban in 2023. Hussain has assisted him in capturing and relocating elephants and tigers. He had the skill to fire tranquilizer darts in operations. He traveled to all hotspots of human-wildlife conflicts in Kerala. He was very active in zones of tiger-human conflict in Wayanadu district and human-elephant conflict zones in Kozhikode, Malappuram, and Palakkad districts.

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