The Hunt with olive ridley turtles in rushikulya in the eastern coast of india Winner of Sanctuary Asia Wildlife Service Award A thing of beauty! In NSTR

"The choice is ours to make: Will we stand by silent, and watch the slaughter? Watch the forests fall? Watch, as wild creatures fall off the map of India? Do we want an India that is silenced of the roar of the tiger? Do we want to live in a country where forests are barren, its land infertile? Or will we stand up and fight? So that we do not tell our children, ‘Once were tigers....." If not, help us, help them.

01st Feb 2014
Up stream minihydle project in Western Ghats of Karnataka. Photo- Niren Jain

Is ‘green’ energy really green?

There are large concentration of wind energy farms in the deserts and grasslands of Kutch and Rajasthan — and a great push for their further expansion. These grasslands, usually dismissed as ‘wastelands’, are throbbing ecosystems, harbouring some of our rarest wildlife, including the critically endangered GIB, lesser floricans, wolves, blackbucks, wild asses and caracals. The Union Ministry of Environment & Forests’ guidelines for GIB recovery programme cites wind turbines as a “major threat to the these low flying birds”, and have strongly advocated that such bustard-unfriendly development be curtailed. In a recent visit to Rajasthan’s Desert National Park, I saw the devastation first hand. Outside the park, the entire landscape is an endless wind farm (in fact, this region has one of the largest such farms in the world). The turbines are lethal for the birds, and along with transmission lines that criss-cross the landscape, allows no safe flyways to the GIBs, Houbara Bustards, vultures and other raptors that this region is known for. Forest staff and researchers working here assert that the GIBs have abandoned areas where wind mills have come up — a fact corroborated by conservationists in Kutch.

13th Jan 2014

Book Review: Tiger Fire

Tiger Fire is a one stop shop on all things tiger. A definite must-have for those who care for, or interested in the tiger—and a hook to those not yet initiated. Reading the book was a fascinating, almost humbling experience. Even for one who devours literature on this big cat—Tiger Fire offered something new. It renewed my acquaintance, left me a little more smitten, even more intrigued. And therein lies the beauty of this beast, who retains its mystery and its magic--which are well reflected in Tiger Fire.

20th Dec 2013
My beautiful picture

Satkosia: A Silent Sariska

In Satkosia Tiger Reserve in Orissa, the tiger may be locally extinct, or at best, close to it. Worse, rather than make efforts to revive this tigerland, the state seems intent to write the reserve and its tigers off.

10th Dec 2013

Pangolins: ‘The new rhinos’

he pangolin is that currently it is the ‘hottest’ item in the illegal wildlife market. The volumes are unprecedented, and the crime is an organised one, on the lines of the illegal trade in tiger derivatives, rhino horns and ivory. Traders advance money to their local contacts who hire poachers. The pangolin’s scaly armour, given by nature as a protective cover, has become its curse. The scales are made of keratin, the same substance as a rhino horn or human nails, and are ground into traditional medicine-believed to ‘cure’ various diseases, including headaches, asthma, certain cancers and boost the virility of impotent souls.

08th Dec 2013
ele_killed_train_N Bengal

Failing our Gods: The slaughter of elephants

If we are to grant elephants the basic right of passage, then it is important that we secure their habitats and corridors. Yet the Government is fighting shy of granting legal cover to elephant habitat. While States like Chhattisgarh and Orissa bowed to industry pressure and backed out of creating elephant reserves which overlapped coal and iron ore deposits that they had committed to, the Centre has surrendered to the coal lobby and is dragging its feet on securing elephant habitat. Currently, elephant reserves and corridors do not have any legal status or protective cover. The National Board for Wildlife has recommended to the MoEF that key wildlife corridors and Elephant reserves be declared as Eco-Sensitive Zones so mega infrastructural and other projects go through the rigour of scrutiny from a wildlife perspective. This was also recommended by the Elephant Task Force, which broadens the protective cover to include ESZs, Conservation or Community Reserves, or extension of existing PAs. They also recommend that railway projects — currently exempt — should be brought under the purview of the Environment Impact Assessment.

24th Nov 2013
Editorial, TigerLink-November 2013

Editorial, TigerLink-November 2013

It’s been a good––and newsy––six months since the last issue of TigerLink. The good news that I would like to start with is that India is on the verge of notifying at least four new tiger reserves: Pilibhit in Uttar Pradesh, Rajaji in Uttarakhand, Guru Ghasidas in Chhattisgarh and Navegaon-Nagzira in Maharashtra. Some like Mhadei in Goa may also hopefully see the light of day soon, while yet others like Sunebada in Orissa and Suhelwa (UP) unfortunately lie in abeyance…

26th Oct 2013
My beautiful picture

Meeting of the State Board for Wildlife, Uttarakhand, 16th September 2013

The State Board for Wildlife, Uttarakhand met on 16th September 2013.   Some of the discussions and decisions are summarised below: Finalisation of the minutes of the SBWL meetings will be...

16th Oct 2013

A Common Heritage

Indeed, human-drawn boundaries have little meaning for nature. Wild, free, unencumbered by artificial lines and protocols, wild animals transcend countries, a fact that must be factored into our conservation strategies. Borders are the final frontiers for many wild animals, the world’s last great wilderness’s, and nations must unite, for the sake of shared natural heritage, and their own people, to safeguard these common assets.