Editor's PickEnvironmentPublic Policy

Illegal Wildlife Trade Is Silently Killing Lesser Known Species In India

Although the Indian culture is generally gentle towards flora and fauna of the country, certain ritualistic practices and traditional beliefs are not. ‘Siyar singhi’ (‘jackal horn’) is a part extracted from a golden jackal’s skull and used as a talisman to satiate superstitious beliefs. The Wildlife Crime Control Bureau of India seized over 370 such talismans between 2013 and 2019. Owls are trapped and illegally traded in India during Diwali and Laxmi Puja to be sacrificed to appease the deities for tantric rituals and ceremonies, endangering the survival of the owl species. People also extensively poach turtles and tortoises for their meat in several parts of the country or capture them for the illegal pet trade.

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Wildlife Biologists: A Case for Inducting Them for Scientific Management of Forests

Wildlife biologists can save India’s ecology by bringing in scientific know-how to assist the administration in the scientific management of forests. The wildlife biologists can be absorbed by the Forest Departments as biologists, endangered species specialists, and conservation education officers. Inducting new services will not interfere with the power and administration of our current forest management system.
The Union and State Governments should build confidence on this matter in view of the changing roles in present-day science.

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