Forest Owlet, Tansa, Maharashtra

-  Photos, -  Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

To start the New Year with a bang, Saurabh Sawant, Rujuta Phadke and myself went to Tansa Wildlife Sanctuary near Mumbai where Sunil Laad — a naturalist associated with the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) — had sighted and photographed the Critically Endangered Forest Owlet in November 2014.

We had just parked our car to stop and search when, to our incredulity, we heard a Forest Owlet calling. It took us just 10 more minutes to locate a beautiful pair … Read More

Electrocuted Great Indian Bustard, Kutch

-  Photos, -  Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

On 12th September 2014, an adult female Great Indian Bustard (Ardeotis nigriceps) collided with high-tension electric powerlines near Kutch Bustard Sanctuary (KBS) in the Abdasa taluka of Kutch district, Gujarat. The bird was found dead just below the powerlines and had electrocution marks. The incident happened a few hundred meters from the boundary of KBS. There are three heavy powerlines passing by the Lala-Jakhau main road, two lines on one side and one on the other. The bird … Read More

Spoon-billed Sandpiper Conservation in Bangladesh

-  Photo Feature, -  Photos, -  Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

Considering its grim current global status, a group of young ornithologists in Bangladesh took up the challenge to save the critically endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper in 2009, when they began the Bangladesh Spoon-billed Sandpiper Conservation Project (BSCP).

Their surveys confirmed that Bangladesh is an extremely important wintering ground for the Spoon-billed Sandpiper, and identified Sonadia Island (near Cox’s Bazar) as the key wintering site and Domar Char as a stopover (passage) site in the country. In Sonadia Island, they found evidence … Read More

Life isn’t fair for the ‘King’!

-  Photos, -  Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

As if going from widespread to critically endangered in a few decades (thanks to Diclofenac) wasn’t bad enough, king vultures also have to fend off competitors for their hard won meals; and sometimes the smaller, more nimble opponents take away the booty!

This particular encounter happened one morning in Ranthambhore National Park, as we waited at a spotted deer kill. The vulture flew in to polish off the remains while the tigress was away. But its chances of a … Read More

CI Wishes its Readers a Green 2014!

-  Photos, -  Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

It has been a terrific couple of years for Conservation India. CI was launched exactly two years ago and along the way we have clocked some interesting statistics. Here is a quick snapshot of our traffic (Google Analytics for the period Jan 01, 2012 to Dec 31, 2013):

  • Total Visits to the Site: 429,320
  • Total Unique Visitors: 286,947
  • Total Pageviews: 1,062,048
  • Average monthly visits: Between 12,000 to 30,000 (sometimes upto 10,000 per day)
  • Average Pages / Visit: ~3

It … Read More

Forest Owlet, Melghat Tiger Reserve

-  Photos, -  Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

This bird is almost as mythical as the Phoenix!

During a recent trip to Melghat, I had a memorable experience with this extremely rare bird. I saw three individuals, which helped me understand the differences between the sexes. It was fascinating to watch their bobbing heads and flicking tails!

The Forest Owlet (Heteroglaux blewitti) was first described in 1873 and last seen in the wild in 1884. Subsequently, it was considered extinct. The bird was rediscovered 113 years later … Read More

Long-billed Vultures Mating, Ramanagaram

-  Photos Leave a Comment

We were lucky to witness the courtship of Long-billed Vultures (Gyps indicus) in Ramanagaram (Ramadevarabetta) in January this year (2013). The process of both courtship and mating went on for a few minutes and they started the entire process again. We left the critically endangered vultures with their privacy and with a silent prayer that their brood grows!

It will be recalled that in response to a hard fought conservation battle, the government of Karnataka notified Ramadevarabetta as … Read More

White-rumped Vulture Release, Ahmedabad

-  Photos, -  Picture of the Week Leave a Comment

Jivdaya Charitable Trust is an NGO dedicated to treating stray animals and birds free of charge. Set up in Ahmedabad in 2007, the Trust has come a long way and is now equipped with the latest treatment facilities, from gas anesthesia machines, latest orthopedic instruments, an X-ray unit, a ventilator, a multipara monitor with a pulse oximeter and also 2 state-of-the-art operation theatres. The Trust also has three fully equipped ambulance vans that treat animals on the spot. The Trust … Read More

Photographers Ruining Hesaraghatta – A Wake-up Call

-  Articles, -  Featured Article Leave a Comment

A rapid assessment study of the grasslands of Hesaraghatta, outside Bangalore, shows that unregulated and excessive vehicular movement of bird photographers is creating permanent vehicle tracks, causing significant disturbance to the feeding and foraging activities of birds, imposing severe stress on the local birdlife, as well as damaging the ecosystem for some rare butterflies. 

Conservation India condemns such unethical and insensitive photography and urges wildlife photographers to strictly adhere to the cardinal rule of nature photography — “The welfare of Read More

Bellary — a Revival for Great Indian Bustards?

-  Articles, -  Featured Article Leave a Comment

Great Indian Bustard (Ardeotis nigriceps – GIB in short), a critically endangered Indian endemic bird on the verge of extinction, is showing signs of recovery in Bellary district. Two birds were recently sighted foraging in an agricultural field by seventeen-year-old budding naturalist Preeth Khona, in Chelugurki village 20 kms from Bellary and 60 Kms south of Sirguppa, where it was earlier rediscovered in 2006 by the author. Preeth Khona, Shruthi Punyamurthy and Sunaina Martin are budding naturalists and members … Read More

Unregulated Tourism at Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary, Nannaj

-  Photos, -  Picture of the Week 1 Comment

There are a lot of tourism-related pressures on the critically endangered Great Indian Bustards in Nannaj, Solapur district, Maharashtra where the population is on the decline. The  population estimate for the Nannaj region is just 10-11 birds. Estimated population of the bustards in Maharashtra is around 35-40 birds. The Pune-based NGO GIB Foundation has proposed some specific recommendations for reducing tourism-related pressures for the bustards, especially during the monsoon — when bustards gather in their traditional breeding grounds — when … Read More

The Official Ramadevarabetta Vulture Sanctuary Notification

-  News 3 Comments

Here is the official Notification, declaring Ramadevarabetta as a Vulture Sanctuary (courtesy @bngbirds).

**********
Government of Karnataka No. F.E.E.234.S.W.L. 2009, dated January 31, 2012

NOTIFICATION

Whereas the Govt. of Karnataka in excise of the powers confered under Section 26A of the Wildlife Protection) Act. 1972 (Ammended in 2003) (Central Act 53 of 1972) has considered the area, situation and limits which are specified in the Schedule notification of the Government of His Highness Maharaja of Mysore State, Notrification No. R-2992-FT-61-17-4 … Read More

National Level Plan Drawn To Protect Endangered Bustard And Floricans

-  News Leave a Comment

A draft plan for national recovery of the critically endangered Great Indian Bustard (Ardeotis nigriceps) and the endangered Lesser Florican (Sypheotides indica) has been submitted by a special task force to the MoEF. The ‘Draft Guidelines for Species Recovery Programmes’– is hosted on the MoEF website. Comments/suggestions are invited from civil society owithin a week of issue of this notification, the website says.

“There is an immediate need for an executable plan both at the … Read More

SC Notification for The Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary in Maharashtra

-  Articles, -  Featured Article Leave a Comment

Finally, the Supreme Court (SC) has cleared the long-pending denotification of Great Indian Bustard (GIB) Sanctuary at Nannaj in Solapur district. From 8,496 sq km earlier, the sanctuary will now be restricted to 1,222 sq km.

The matter was pending in the court since 2006. In October, 2008, the SC had directed the committee for rationalization of boundaries to recommend the area of the GIB sanctuary. Accordingly, a committee headed by VB Sawarkar, ex-director of Wildlife Institute of India (WII), … Read More

The Manipuri Brow-antlered Deer (Sangai) Habitat Facing Degradation

-  News Leave a Comment

The Manipuri Brow-antlered Deer or ‘sangai‘ or ‘dancing deer’, a critically endangered species of deer, which lives in a unique floating habitat is facing a threat of extinction as the floating biomass (or ‘phumdis’) on which it walks has been steadily decreasing in buoyancy and thickness over the last few years. As a result, Sangai face death from drowning as the phumdis may not be able to support its weight. This has also restricted the mobility … Read More