Maharashtra will have its fifth tiger reserve in Nagzira as the National Tiger Conservation Authority has given nod to the development of the conservation zone. The tiger reserve will be set up between Bhandara and Gondia districts.
The Nagzira-Navegaon tiger reserve will be established to conserve tigers wandering outside the Tadoba reserve territory. The Nagzira sanctuary, which was of 150 square kilometer and the Navegaon National Park, was of 130 square kilometer, which has been increased to 700 square kilometer to form a new tiger reserve.
Where are the other four tiger reserves in Maharashtra?
The other four tiger reserves in Maharashtra are in:
About National Tiger Conservation Authority:
The Centrally Sponsored Scheme “Project Tiger” was launched in April, 1973 with the objective “to ensure maintenance of a viable population of Tigers in India for scientific, economic, aesthetic, cultural and ecological values, and to preserve for all times, areas of biological importance as a national heritage for the benefit, education and enjoyment of the people.”
The Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972 was amended keeping in view the needs of the Project Tiger for providing enabling provisions for constitution of the National Tiger Conservation Authority and the Tiger and Other Endangered Species Crime Control Bureau.
So, the National Tiger Conservation Authority was constituted from September 4, 2006 to strengthen tiger conservation. The functions are as follows:
- Ensuring normative standards in tiger reserve management
- Preparation of reserve specific tiger conservation plan
- Lay down annual/ audit report before Parliament
- Instituting State level Steering Committees under the Chairmanship of Chief Minister and establishment of Tiger Conservation Foundation.
- According approval for declaring new Tiger Reserves.
The NTCA has constituted a multidisciplinary Tiger and Other Endangered Species Crime Control Bureau (Wildlife Crime Control Bureau) with effect from 6.6.2007. The WCCB comprises the officers from Police, Forest, Customs and other enforcement agencies to effectively control illegal trade in wildlife.
Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF)
The announcement for creation of Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF) was announced by the Finance Minister in Budget speech of 2008. A onetime grant of Rs. 50 Crore was provided to the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) for raising, arming and deploying a Special Tiger Protection Force for 13 tiger reserves. The rest of the reserves were taken up later.
Andhra Pradesh is on high alert as very severe cyclone Lehar is gusting towards it. Currently, it is centered 650 km east-southeast on Machilipatttam in the State where it is likely to hit. It would be the second storm to hit Andhra in barely a week after the impact of cyclone Helen. The Army, the Navy and the Coast Guard have been alerted. Fishermen have been asked not to venture into the sea while those already in the sea have been asked to return.
The Coast Guard in Odisha has launched ‘Operation Oliver’ as part of its annual mission to ensure the safe mid-sea visit of breeding Olive Ridley sea turtles in Gahirmatha marine sanctuary area of the State.
The operation is being conducted in collaboration with the forest department in order to keep watch and vigil on illegal fishing along the turtle concentration zone.
The authorities have also deployed a state-of-the-art CG ship and a dornier aircraft for the exercise for surveillance on trespassing and keep an eye on illegal fishing in Gahirmatha marine sanctuary. The coast guard has organized interactive sessions with fishermen communities to sensitize them on the legal embargo on fishing during Ridleys’ nesting season.
It is worth recalling that the Odisha Government recently imposed a 7-month fishing ban within 20 km from the river mouths of Dhamara, Devi and Rusikulya in Gamjam district to protect nests of endangered Olive Ridley sea turtles. The ban on the 20 km span of the Dhamra-Rushikulya river mouth has been imposed in accordance with Sections 2, 7 and 4 of the Orissa Marine Fishing Regulation Act, 1982. These prohibitory orders are now enforced every year to ensure the safety of turtles.
Olive Ridley Turtles:
- Scientific name: Lepidochelys olivacea .
- Also known as the Pacific ridley sea turtle.
- Found in warm and tropical waters, primarily in the Pacific andIndian Oceans.
- Global population of annual nesting females of these turtles reduced to 852,550 by 2008.
- Considered vulnerable because of their few remaining nesting sites in the world.
- Largest breeding ground for these turtles: The Gahirmatha Beach in Kendrapara district of Odisha (India), now a part of the Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary.
- Bhitarkanika Mangroves designated a Ramsar Wetland of International Importance in 2002.
- World’s largest known rookery of Olive Ridley sea turtles.
- Two other mass nesting beaches on the mouth of rivers Rushikulya and Devi.
Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary
Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary is located in Orissa and is only marine wildlife sanctuary of Orissa. This sanctuary boasts of possessing the world’s largest known rookery of Olive Ridley sea turtle.
Olive Ridley is classified as Vulnerable according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature And Natural Resources (IUCN), and is listed in Appendix I of CITES. These turtles are best known for their behavior of synchronized nesting in mass numbers, termed arribadas.
The winter season is the mating and breeding season of these turtles. So accordingly, the fishing activities inside the Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary and 20 kms off the shore are banned for 7 months starting from November 1 to May 31 every year. The ban is enforced under the Orissa Marine Fishing Regulation Act, 1982 and Orissa Marine Fishing Rules, 1983 to protect the endangered Olive Ridley Sea turtles.
The 19th Conference of Parties (COP-19), to the Kyoto Protocol concluded in Warsaw, Poland.
The UN Conference on Climate Change 2013 concluded with negotiating countries reaching a compromise on how to combat global warming. They came out of the long standing impasse by approving a way out for a new global climate treaty to be signed in Paris in 2015.
What was the purpose of COP19 talks at Warsaw?
Al these deliberations are focused towards reaching a new global climate treaty which will replace the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which sets targets for developed nations to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. The Kyoto Protocol is valid till 2020. Keeping this in view.the global agreement has to be agreed on by 2015 and in force by 2020, which made it imperative that delegates thrash out a large part of the draft version this year (2013) for consideration at next year’s COP-20 in Lima, Peru.
What is the outcome of COP-19 talks at Warsaw?
Delegates to COP19 agreed that all nations should work to cut emissions from burning coal, oil and gas as soon as possible, and ideally by the first quarter of 2015. Major decisions adopted at this conference include decisions on further advancing the Durban Platform, the Green Climate Fund and Long-Term Finance, the Warsaw Framework for REDD Plus, the Warsaw International Mechanism for Loss and Damage and other decisions