Monday, May 23, 2011

Saving a Sanctuary

In a rare example women in Bangladesh at Chunati Wildlife Sanctuary have taken the cudgel to save their precious heritage. Along with the forest guards they patrol the confines of the forest a vital elephant corridor. The women adorned in green saree work as volunteer but do get an initial compensation. They have succeeded in the task of preventing illegal wood felling and poaching. This has resulted in the forest recuperating quickly to regain its lost splendour.

The forests after local conservation efforts have shown remarkable signs of regeneration. There is a rational approach to benefiting from the forest produce with sharing arrangement between the department and the locals. In instances like these the uses of natural resources becomes sustainable since the value system is based on conserving one's heritage. 

The women have shown an exemplary display of value system since very few realize the importance of natural ecosystem. Forest wealth have been plundered by outsiders while those dependent upon it have watched helplessly. Well not in this case. Read more:  Sentinels of the forest    

The scourge of humanity has depleted all natural ecosystems for personal consumption. This is happening everywhere in India since the locals have not been educated regarding these priceless jewels. Once people realize that conserving these ecosystems is good for their communities more such conservation efforts will come into picture. Involving local communities is safeguarding the heritage wealth is a sound principle that will increase preservation of forests and wildlife.      

Friday, May 13, 2011

MP Increasing tigers

The last tiger census showed an increase of tiger population. This was heartening but the increase was not impressive by any means. More over the Madhya Pradesh Forest Minister was not happy with the state figures.

The tigers have been declining in numbers in MP. The decline is more because the census methods have been improved. They are no longer at the mercy of whims and fantasy of the park authorities. Recounting exercise carried out by the state government showed a minor increase. But this was more and ego boosting exercise rather than a serious conjecture of what is happening.   

Panna was the first shocker and the falling numbers in other tigers reserve are suggestive of some major issues. What we should keep in mind is that ground situation may have gone worse. Disturbance in and around the reserves and incidence of poaching cannot be ruled out.

Hence a proactive corrective stance is needed more than the counting exercise. Tiger conservation is important if we wish to save this wonderful apex mammal. Much depends on how we perceive this importance and go all out to save the species. India still retains the largest population of the tigers in the wild. Let us get the ball rolling fetch and upswing scenario rather than the prevailing down slide.