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Species Included in Appendix I of UNCMS

  • 21 Feb 2020
  • 3 min read

Why in News

The Great Indian Bustard, Asian Elephant and Bengal Florican have been included in Appendix I of UN Convention on Migratory Species at the ongoing 13th Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) in Gandhinagar (Gujarat).

  • India’s proposal to include all the three species in the Appendix I was unanimously accepted by the 13th COP to the CMS.
  • A migratory species may be listed in Appendix I provided that the best scientific evidence available indicates that the species is endangered.

Asian Elephant

  • India is the natural home of the largest population of Asian elephants. It is also found in Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Myanmar.
  • It usually resides in shrublands, artificial/terrestrial forests and grasslands.
  • It is listed as ‘Endangered’ on the IUCN Red List of threatened species. It is also listed in Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and Schedule I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
  • The challenges confronting Asian elephant conservation in most elephant Range States are habitat loss and fragmentation, human-elephant conflict, and poaching and illegal trade of elephants.

Great Indian Bustard

  • The Great Indian Bustard is one of the heaviest flying birds in the world.
  • It usually resides in dry grasslands and scrublands on the Indian subcontinent; its largest populations are found in the Indian state of Rajasthan.
    • The Great Indian Bustard is the state bird of Rajasthan.
  • It is listed as ‘Critically Endangered’ on the IUCN Red List. It is also listed in Appendix I of CITES and Schedule I of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
  • 90% of its population has been reduced within 50 years (six generations) majorly due to poaching.

Bengal Florican

  • The species has two disjunct populations, one in the Indian Subcontinent, the other in South-East Asia. The former occurs in Indian Subcontinent mainly in India (Uttar Pradesh, Assam and Arunachal Pradesh.) and terai region of Nepal.
  • It inhabits lowland dry, or seasonally inundated, natural and semi-natural grasslands, often interspersed with scattered scrub or patchy open forest.
  • It has been listed as ‘Critically Endangered’ on the IUCN Red List. The bird is listed under Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act of India, 1972 and Appendix I of CITES
  • It has a very small, rapidly declining population largely as a result of widespread loss of its grassland habitat.


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