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What steps have been proposed to protect the Great Indian Bustard, asks HC

  • Posted By
    10Pointer
  • Categories
    Environment
  • Published
    7th Dec, 2020

Context

The High Court of Karnataka has directed the State government to inform it of the immediate steps.

What are the protections initiatives around GIB?

  • The Wildlife (Protection) Act has been enacted to protect wild animals and birds.
  • As per Article 48 of the Constitution, it is part of State policy to protect forests, wildlife, and animals in the country.
  • It is the duty of everyone to protect wildlife as per Article 51.
  • It has also been identified as one of the species for the recovery programme under the Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats of the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India.

What is its Status?

  • It is Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List and the National Wildlife Action Plan (2002-2016).
  • It is listed in Schedule I of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.
  • It comes under the CMS Convention and in Appendix I of CITES.

What is its habitat?

  • The great Indian bustard was distributed throughout Western India, spanning 11 states, as well as parts of Pakistan.
  • Its stronghold was once the Thar desert in the north-west and the Deccan plateau of the peninsula.
  • Today, its population is confined mostly to Rajasthan and Gujarat.
  • Small population occurs in Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh.
  • Bustards generally favour flat open landscapes with minimal visual obstruction and disturbance, therefore adapt well in grasslands.
  • They avoid grasses taller than themselves and dense scrub like thickets.

What are the threats surrounding it?

  • Hunting
  • Poaching outside Protected Areas
  • Collisions with high tension electric wires
  • Fast moving vehicles and free-ranging dogs in villages.
  • Habitat loss and alteration as a result of widespread agricultural expansion and mechanized farming
  • Infrastructural development such as irrigation, roads, electric poles, as well as mining and industrialization.