Mysuru, February 7:- To take stock about the issues related to leopard conflicts in human dominated landscape, the Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens in Mysuru in association with Forest Department is organising a meeting of all stake holders on February 8.
In a press release, B P Ravi, member-secretary of Zoo Authority of Karnataka (ZAK) and Additional Principal Chief Conservator of Forests has stated that the region is witnessing increased human-animal conflicts in recent days. The incidents of sighting leopards and their capture in human dominated landscape are at an all time high.
The reasons may be many, varying from reproductive biology, adaptability of leopard to change in lifestyle of human beings, extension of human dwellings in farm lands, setting up of hotels and resorts and disposal of food and animal wastes by the meat shops and slaughter houses.
Mysore Zoo in the past had initiated specially designed programme called ‘Conservation speak’ to create awareness about conservation measures initiated and being adopted in the country with particular reference to our state by the government and other agencies including the NGOs.
It is a known fact that the Mysuru Zoo with its many conservation education programmes has created general awareness about the wildlife and conservation practices and policies among the interested stakeholders.
“However, conservation as an idea and process cannot be completed unless we move from the ‘conservation speak to conservation action.’ Conservation as we understand is not only a conservation of forests, wildlife and other natural resources, but also brings up an issue of inter-generation equity.”
It’s about involvement of citizens in helping the government and other agencies who are involving in the day-to-day conservation measures, as well as containing/mitigating the human-animal conflicts. Not only the knowledge about conservation is important, but also affirmative action by all the concerned stake holders is also very important to contain or mitigate human-animal conflicts. It boils down to individual action. It’s about what we do when nobody is watching.
Starting from informing/communicating the agencies concerned about the sighting of wild animals in human dominated landscape, it includes the cooperation and action of influencing the common people in containing the problems assumes importance in high conflict zones.
ZAK in association with Forest Department is contemplating a specially designed quarterly programme, where in all stake holders involved would be given an opportunity to share their experiences and formulate coordinated action on a specific issue related to conservation.
“So from conservation speak we will be moving to conservation action, thus helping the society to have better understanding and appreciation of wildlife and also the reasons behind conservation of a species or habitat in the interest of future generation.”
ZAK will take up these efforts across the state, concerning the region and area specific conservation issues.