Wildlife Week will be celebrated from 2nd October
Active public cooperation is required in the protection of this rich heritage
Wildlife Week is celebrated from 2nd October to 8th October all over India by the Forest Department in association with various organizations committed to the conservation of wildlife.
During this Wildlife Week, the Forest Department organizes programs to educate about wildlife, their importance, usefulness and need in the protection of the environment as well as to inspire its conservation. During this week, programs are organized to involve the folk communities in this work.
The number of mammals in the estimated 17.5 million recorded organisms on Earth is very low. Conservation of mammals is at the heart of forest management in most of the protected areas of the world. According to recent genetic analysis, most of the mammals originated after the extinction of dinosaurs.
Citing a report, wildlife photographer Dr. Rahul Bhagwat said that there are 410 species of mammals in India, which is 8.6% of the world's mammal species. The survival of 124 species of mammals is at risk, according to a note by Iucn.
Gujarat has more diversity of mammals and about 107 varieties are registered in Gujarat. Due to habitat destruction and other reasons some species like elephant, gaur, leopard, Indian wild dog, large squirrel of Dang have become extinct from the state and many existing species are living in danger.
Two of the major mammals found in India, namely the Asiatic Lion and the Indian wild ass, are found only in Gujarat. Gujarat has the largest population of Asian lions, wild donkeys, antelopes and nilgais in terms of numbers. Apart from this, different species of marine mammals are also found in Gujarat.
Gujarat is also very rich in terms of birds as more than 500 species of birds are found in here. The state has forests as well as various types of habitats such as grasslands, deciduous forests, desert areas, rainfed areas with many different types of birds. People in Gujarat have a spirit of compassion and mostly stay away from bird hunting so migratory birds also come to Gujarat in large numbers during the winter season.
There are 3 Ramsar bird sites in Gujarat namely Nalsarovar, Wadhwana and Thol. It is a matter of pride for Vadodara district that its only bird shrine Wadhwana has recently been included in the Ramsar site.
Discussing the diversity of birds found in Gujarat, Dr. Rahul said that birds like gray hypocholius, black francolin, greater flamingo, lesser flamingo, bar headed goose, steppe eagle, eatern imperial eagle, white rumped vulture, water cock are found here.
The Forest Department is working hard to save the endangered the Lesser Florican and Great Indian Bustard seen in Gujarat.
The geography and wildlife of Gujarat is wonderfully diverse. It can range from the rain forests of Gir to the deserts of Kutch as well as the grasslands of Saurashtra and Dahod, due to such diversity it has many different types of animals and birds and many types of plants.
From wild animals like lions, bears, panthers to small hawks, big hawks, grasshoppers, many kinds of ducks, birds living in the forest, water as well as in the desert region are seen. Due to the desert region, a large number of birds of prey such as Oriental honey buzzard, greater spotted eagle, steppe eagle can be seen here in winter in the desert of Kutch. Ghudkhar Sanctuary is an excellent place to see such birds in winter.
Gujarat has 4 National Parks and 23 Protected Areas with Gir National Park and Protected Forest at its center. Nalsarovar is very famous when it comes to birds. October 2 is the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the father of the nation, a staunch supporter of non-violence. This week's research with him seems very meaningful.
In the years immediately after independence, the central government made some provisions and arrangements for the protection of invaluable forest and animal resources. Since then, this week has been celebrated to engage people in the protection of forest animals and to raise awareness about their conservation in communities. Wildlife Conservation Day is celebrated on 3rd March by UN resolution.
Both have had good results. For example, in Gujarat alone, the participation of people in the protection of forests and wildlife has led to an increase in the number of animals like lions in Gir and pangolins elsewhere. The theme for this year's Wildlife Week is Forest and Livelihood: Sustaining People and Planet.
By interpreting it, it can be said that forests are the source of livelihood for its inhabitants and the surrounding areas. This means sustaining the people and the earth by preserving and increasing the diversity of forests and their flora fauna. Indirectly, it is said that in order to revive people, it is essential to revive forests and their resources.
An estimated 250 to 300 million people live in the forests and surrounding areas. The forest meets the needs of these people like food, shelter, energy and herbs. Forests and forest creatures must also be protected for the welfare of these people. So it is not a pity to keep the forest and forest creatures alive, it is an exercise to keep oneself alive.