Chousingha near Pune, Maharashtra

superadmin Photos, Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

We were out on our regular Sunday bird-watching trip, 70 kms outside Pune city when we stumbled on this Chousingha or Four-horned Antelope (Tetracerus quadricornis) on 22nd May 2016 at 6:50 AM.

Arriving at a road section where the hills were clothed in scrub jungle, we decided to explore the area on foot. We saw something like a Chinkara (Indian Gazelle) take a couple of jumps and run behind a small hill in a matter of seconds. Sandip was quick … Read More

Illegal Wildlife Trade Amidst the Biggest Animal Fair of Asia – The Sonepur Animal Mela in Bihar

superadmin Announcements, Articles, Featured Article Leave a Comment

Background

The Sonepur Cattle Fair, aka the Harihar Kshetra Mela, the biggest cattle fair of Asia is rooted in Hindu mythology. Based on a sacred legend in Hinduism – Gajendra Moksha (The Liberation of Gajendra), folklore has it that Lord Vishnu descended upon earth to protect Gajendra, (the elephant) from the clutches of Makara, (the crocodile) and awarded him Moksha (salvation).

An official survey of the Sonepur Cattle Fair, led by TRAFFIC in November-December of 2013, unveiled … Read More

Declaring Wildlife as Vermin — Legalising Hunting?

superadmin Announcements, Articles Leave a Comment

Uttarakhand, Bihar and Himachal Pradesh have had – in recent months – notifications issued by the Central Government stating that select species of wildlife have been declared as vermin in specified areas. In other words for a specified period, in these areas, the wild pig in Uttarakhand, wild pig and Nilgai in Bihar and Rhesus Macaque in Himachal Pradesh are shifted to schedule five of the Wildlife Protection Act. Besides, Maharashtra and Telangana have had culling orders issued by the … Read More

Vasant Vihar Parakeets

Prerna Singh Bindra Leave a Comment

She was like any other hawker, selling—persuasively, aggressively—extolling the qualities of her wares. Only she wasn’t ‘just another hawker’. Her wares were illegal; she was hawking parakeets, the trapping and trade of which is prohibited under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.

I spotted the woman in Vasant Vihar (near Priya Cinema), Delhi, on my way to visit a very sick friend, and almost turned a blind eye. You know how it is, when the task at hand is overwhelming or … Read More

Supreme Court Calls for New Standards for Endangered Species Conservation

superadmin Announcements, Articles, Featured Article Leave a Comment

A slightly different version of this article appeared in the Hindu dated May 7, 2013.

The recent Supreme Court judgment on lions (Centre for Environmental Law WWF-1 v. Union of India and others, Supreme Court, 2013) has called for completely new standards for endangered species conservation to be set in the country. It has asked for lions to be re-introduced to Madhya Pradesh (Intervention Application 100, Biodiversity Conservation Trust of India through Faiyaz Khudsar in writ petition 337, 1995). It … Read More

Blackbuck in Captivity, Karnataka

superadmin Photos, Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

Although the species is protected under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, this male Blackbuck (Antilope cervicapra) is illegally held in captivity at a religious place (Devargudda) near Ranebennur. It was captured in the nearby fields when it was young and is now an adult buck. Sadly, this sprinter is kept chained the entire day from dawn to dusk. Since Ranebennur blackbuck sanctuary is close, there are frequent sightings of blackbuck in the fields. But holding them captive is an offence … Read More

Gangetic Dolphin killed by Villagers, Assam

superadmin Photos Leave a Comment

Lekha Borah sends this picture of a Gangetic dolphin (Platanista gangetica) killed by local villagers in Assam. A fish seller was found selling dolphin meat at a roadside market in Lezai-Kalakhowa, 15 km from Dibrugarh.

Gangetic dolphin, a fresh water dolphin found in the Ganges and the Brahmpautra rivers of India, Nepal, Bhutan, Pakistan and Bangladesh is the national aquatic animal of India. It is classified as an endangered species and included in the Schedule I species list … Read More

Langur Pet, Taj Mahal

superadmin Photos, Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

I saw this langur captured and used as a pet. I found this guy at the Taj Mahal, Agra. He was sitting on this bench behind the Taj structure overlooking the river. This was photographed on 29th December 2012.

The Wildlife Protection Act (WLPA) prohibits any person (other than a recognized zoo including a rescue centre) from keeping any wild animal (species listed in Schedule I to IV) in captivity without the previous permission in writing of the Chief Wildlife … Read More

Captive Slow Loris, Mokakchong, Nagaland

superadmin Photos, Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

A statewide Nagaland biodiversity survey was conducted by students and alumni of NCBS, Bangalore, in May-June 2011. Across sites, the teams found wild animals kept by villagers – some as pets, others for eventual consumption. These included rare mammals like Leopard Cats, Slow Loris and Stump-tailed Macaques as well as several bird species. While the team physically didn’t observe any, keeping (Blyth’s) Tragopans as pets also seemed to be a widespread hobby and a delicacy reserved for VIPs.

This Slow … Read More

Betraying India’s Wildlife

Praveen Bhargav Opinion, Resources 2 Comments

Shekar Dattatri co-authored this article, which originally appeared in the Oct 2011 issue of GovernanceNow.

Poor governance, replete with farcical meetings, subjective and improper application of the law, and unilateral decision-making, mars the functioning of the National Board for Wildlife, the apex body on conservation. The new Union Environment Minister must take urgent corrective action to restore the Board’s credibility, and protect India’s precious natural heritage from the relentless pressures of development.

Forests and wildlife in India are governed … Read More

Captive Hill Myna, Munnar, Kerala

kiranbh Photos Leave a Comment

In many parts of India, people still keep wild animals captive in their homes as pets. This photographer found this captive Southern or lesser Hill Myna (Gracula indica) at a grocery store in Munnar, Kerala. The store also had a captive Malabar (blue-winged parakeet). This photo was taken in March 2012.

The Wildlife Protection Act (WLPA) prohibits any person (other than a recognized zoo including a rescue centre) from keeping any wild animal (species listed in Schedule I … Read More

Captive Malabar Giant Squirrel

superadmin Photos, Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

In many parts of India, people still keep wild animals captive in their homes as pets. This photographer found this captive Malabar Giant Squirrel (Ratufa indica) in a plantation owner’s house near Pala, Kottayyam, Kerala. The forest department was alerted and hopefully the squirrel is now free.

The Wildlife Protection Act (WLPA) prohibits any person (other than a recognized zoo including a rescue centre) from keeping any wild animal (species listed in Schedule I to IV) in captivity … Read More

Over 600 Smuggled Star Tortoises Returned To India From Malaysia

superadmin News Leave a Comment

A parcel containing 601 Indian star tortoises was returned to Chennai from Malaysia and handed over to the Forest department. The tortoises were handed over from Kuala Lumpur after customs officials in the airport found it in an unclaimed parcel that allegedly arrived from Dhaka, Bangladesh. Star tortoises are not protected species in either Malaysia or Bangladesh. They are protected under the Indian Wildlife Protection Act (WLPA). The tortoises will be quarantined for a couple of days in the local … Read More

Speedpost Parcel Containing Ivory caught in Guwahati

superadmin News Leave a Comment

Acting on specific intelligence, customs sleuths in the Guwahati airport confiscated an Ahmedabad bound parcel containing 3.45 kgs of Ivory. The parcel was seized as it was being boarded onto a Spicejet flight. The Ivory was concealed under paddy husks and the value of the tusks is estimated to be around Rs. 10.35 lakhs in the domestic market and crores abroad. Smuggling in the north east is increasingly said to be taking an aerial route.… Read More

Guidance Document for Non-forestry Activities in Wildlife Habitats

superadmin Resources, The Ready Reckoner, Toolkit Leave a Comment

The Wildlife  (Protection) Act, 1972 and orders of the Hon’ble Supreme Court make it mandatory for following certain procedures for taking  up any non-forestry activities in wildlife habitats. Now it is mandatory that all non-forestry activities in wildlife habitats  (within PAs and 10 km from PA boundaries), need approval from State and National Board for Wildlife (Standing Committee). In order to facilitate and guide people on the various steps to be followed for taking up non-forestry activities in wildlife habitats, … Read More

Mandate of the Standing Committee of the NBWL

Praveen Bhargav Featured Toolkit, Resources, Toolkit Leave a Comment

The National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) is constituted by the Central Government under Section 5 A of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 (WLPA). The National Board may, at its discretion, constitute a Standing Committee under sub-section (1) of Section 5B. The Standing Committee shall consist of the Vice-Chairperson (Union Minister in charge of Forests and Wildlife) the Member Secretary and not more than ten members to be nominated by the Vice-Chairperson from amongst the members of the National Board.

The … Read More