Biodiversity & Environment
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- 05 Aug 2020
- 3 min read
Why in News
Karnataka, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh rank high in the conservation of the endangered Dhole in India, according to a new study.
- This study was conducted by scientists from the Wildlife Conservation Society-India, the University of Florida, the Wildlife Conservation Trust, and the National Centre for Biological Sciences.
- In this study, the scientists explored the conservation tenets of retention, recovery and restoration of dholes in India.
- Karnataka, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh were found to be adequately equipped for consolidating forest habitats and recovering populations of Dhole by increasing prey density and reducing the pressure on forests.
- Arunachal Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, Telangana and Goa are suggested to increase financial investments in the forest and wildlife sectors, and reduce the ease of granting forest clearances for infrastructure projects.
- Improving habitat conditions and prey densities in the Eastern Ghats of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Odisha would strengthen the link between dhole populations in the Western Ghats and central India.
- About: Dhole (Cuon alpinus) is a wild carnivorous animal belonging to the canine family, found in Central, South, East Asia, and Southeast Asia.
- They are also known as Asian wild dogs.
- Ecological role: Dholes play an important role as apex predators in forest ecosystems.
- Conservation Status: It is under the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s ‘endangered’ category.
- The species is protected under Schedule 2 of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 and under Appendix 2 of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
- In India, the first conservation breeding centre for dhole was built at the Indira Gandhi Zoological Park (IGZP) in 2014.
- Ongoing habitat loss: Due to deforestation and fragmentation of forest corridors.
- Depletion of prey base: Ungulates are main prey of dholes whose population is rapidly decreasing due to excessive hunting and habitat loss.
- Persecution due to livestock predation and disease transfer from domestic and feral dogs.