इंडियन आवाज़     05 Dec 2023 11:04:44      انڈین آواز

Protect Critically Endangered Animals

like the Sumatran Rhino, Javan Rhino and Pigmy Hog.There are many other names like Flying Squirrel not widely hard so far.

Selective logging, collection of wood for subsistence and urbanisation are major threats to the habitat of this Shillong Bubble-nest Frog biologically known as Raorchesters Shillongensis. The amphibian, one among the 19 in its category is found in Malki forest in Shillong and some parts of Mizoram.

The list of Critically Endangered species which has seven species of birds, one mammal, four amphibians/reptiles and a sub-list of 22 species contains many from the North East India.

The list released by the Ministry of Environment Forest said that Sumatraan rhinos is the smallest and most endangered of the five species. Once occurred in the foot hills of the Himalayas and North East India the species is now thought to be regionally extinct in India.  Its counterpart Javan Rhino is also believed to be extinct in India and survives in small numbers in Java and Vietnam.

The pygmy hog (Porcula salvania) is the world’s smallest wild pig, with adults weighing only eight kg which is critically endangered. In 1996, a captive-breeding programme of the species was initiated in Assam, and some hogs have been reintroduced in Sonai Rupai area also in two years ago.

This species constructs a nest throughout the year. It is one of the most useful indicators of management status of grassland habitats. The grasslands where the pygmy hog resides are crucial for the survival of other endangered species such as Indian rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis), swamp deer (Cervus duvauceli), wild buffalo (Bubalus arnee), hispid hare (Caprolagus hispidus), and swamp francolin (Francolinus gularis).

Formerly, the species was more widely distributed along the southern Himalayan foothills but now is restricted to only a single remnant population in Manas Wildlife Sanctuary and its buffer reserves.  The main threats are loss and degradation of grasslands, dry-season burning, livestock grazing and afforestation of grasslands. Hunting is also a threat to the remnant populations, the report said.

Conservation efforts often focus on large and charismatic animals such as the tiger and the elephant that are undoubtedly in urgent need of protection. However, there are a host of species that do not rank very high on the conservation totem pole, although they are also under great threat and are classified as critically endangered.

Critically endangered is the highest risk category assigned by the IUCN Red List to wild species. There are five quantitative criteria to determine whether a taxon is threatened. Critically endangered means that the natural population of a species has decreased, or will decrease, by 80 per cent within three generations, and all the available evidence indicates an extremely high risk of its extinction in the wild.

The list also includes some species of birds three of which are from the North East- While bellied Heron, Bengal Florican and Pink-headed Duck. Similarly,  Namdapha flying squirrel (Biswamoyopterus biswasi) only one in its genus exclusively found in Namdapha tiger reserve in Arunachal Pradesh is on the list since it is widely hunted for food.




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