Kaziranga National Park Current Affairs - 2019
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The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has undertaken a project to create DNA Profiles of all rhinos present in India. The project which would formally be underway by end of 2019 is set to be completed by 2021 (project’s deadline).
About: After the completion of project, Indian rhino could become India’s first wild animal species to have all its members DNA-sequenced. The database so collected will be hosted in Wildlife Institute of India (WII) headquarters in Dehradun.
Project Highlights: The project being undertaken is a subset of India’s larger, already ongoing Rhino Conservation Programme.
Population: In India, there are about 2,600 rhinos and more than 90% of Indian Rhino population is concentrated in Kaziranga National Park, Assam.
Since 1980s, Indian government is trying to move significant number of rhinos out of Kaziranga. The aim behind it is in interest of the species’ conservation, threats they face from poaching and challenges to their current habitat. Some other locations for translocating are in Assam itself like Manas National Park and Pobitara Wildlife Sancutary.
Project Proponents: includes World Wide Fund for Nature-India (WWF-India) and Centre-funded Wildlife Institute of India (WII).
Current Updates: around 60 samples of tissue of rhinos living outside Kaziranga have been collected so far and researchers are also extracting DNA samples from dung.
Importance: DNA Database exercise would be useful to curb killing and poaching and collecting evidence in wildlife crimes involving rhinos.
Rhino Species: There are three species of rhinos, out of which only one species ‘the Indian rhino’ is found in India.
Tags: Assam • DNA Database • DNA Profiles • DNA Sequencing • Kaziranga National Park • Manas National Park • Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change • Pobitara Wildlife Sancutary • Rhino Conservation Programme • Wildlife Institute of India • World Wide Fund for Nature-India
The recent census carried out in Kaziranga National Park, Assam has revealed that there was a marginal increase in the population of the one-horned rhinoceros here.
As per census report, currently there are 2,413 rhinos in Kaziranga National Park registering a marginal increase of 12 rhinos compared to last census. Out of the rhinos spotted, 642 are adult males and 793 are adult females while sex of 206 adult rhinos could not be determined during the census operation.
About Kaziranga National Park
Kaziranga national park is located in the Golaghat and Nagaon districts of Assam. The park is a home to two-thirds of the world’s great one-horned rhinoceroses, which are listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red list of Threatened Species. It was designated with National Park status in 1968 and was declared UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985 for its unique natural environment. Kaziranga is also recognized as an Important Bird Area by Birdlife International for conservation of avifaunal species.