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Vultures UPSC NOTE

 

Vultures and its Importance

  • A vulture is a bird of prey that scavenges on carrion.

  • Vultures are the natural scavengers and cleaners of the environment.

  • They feed on dead decaying animals thereby enhancing the process of mineral return to the soil.

  • As scavengers, vultures help prevent the spread of many diseases.

  • They can remove toxins from entering the environment by consuming carcasses of dead cattle/wildlife before they decompose.

Protection status

  • The Indian vulture (Gyps indicus) is an Old World vulture native to India, Pakistan and Nepal. 

  • It has been listed as Critically Endangered on the IUCN Red List.

  • 9 species of vultures are found in India.

  • Of these nine species, 4 are listed as Critically Endangered species of Vultures and one as endangered species in IUCN red list.

  • The Wild Life (Protection) Act of 1972 has moved the White-backed, Long-billed, and Slender-billed Vultures' protection status from Schedule IV to Schedule I.

Vultures in India 

  • 96% of India’s vulture population declined between 1993 and 2003.

  • Central government put into place two action plans to protect the species at the national level — the first in 2006 and the second, ongoing plan for 2020-2025.

  • One of the important action points in this nationwide plan is the formation of State-level committees to save the critically endangered population of vultures.

Challenges faced by them

  • Threatened by man made drugs.

  • The use of some Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) to treat cattle, such as diclofenac, nimesulide, ketoprofen among others, has led to the crash in vulture populations across India.

  • Vultures are slow breeding birds, laying only one egg a year and having a longer immaturity duration after fledging.

  • Natural Habitats loss

  • Invasive weeds like Lantana Camara in vulture landscapes hinder the birds from scavenging.

Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve

Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve

  • Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve is a protected area and tiger reserve located along the area straddling both the Western Ghats and Eastern Ghats in the Erode District of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

  • The Sathyamangalam Forest Division is part of the Bramhagiri-Nilgiris-Eastern Ghats Elephant Reserve notified in 2003.

  • In 2008, part of the Sathyamangalam Forest Division was declared as a wildlife sanctuary and enlarged in 2011.

  • In 2013, an area of 1,408.6 square km of the erstwhile sanctuary was notified as a tiger reserve. 

  • It was the fourth tiger reserve established in Tamil Nadu as a part of Project Tiger and is the third largest in the state.

  • The reserve is a significant ecosystem and a wildlife corridor in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve between the Western Ghats and the Eastern Ghats.

  • It is a genetic link between the five other protected areas which it adjoins, including the Billigiriranga Swamy Temple Wildlife Sanctuary, Sigur Plateau, Mudumalai National Park, Bandipur National Park and the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary. 

  • A small population of critically endangered Indian vulture (Gyps indicus) and three other species of vultures were discovered in the Moyar river valley.


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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Vultures UPSC NOTE
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