NGO’s Working to Conserve Wildlife In Bandipur
Bandipur is quite famous for its national park and has a rich collection of tigers, elephants and other animals. Also, called the Venugopala Park after the Venugopala shrine here, it is located in the Chamarajanagar district in Karnataka. Just 80 kms from Mysore, the place is frequented by the wildlife enthusiasts and tourists.
Bandipur is one of the tiger reserves which come under the purview of Project Tiger. There are 24 more tiger reserves in India currently. And, like all other wildlife sanctuaries, there are many NGOs and wildlife conservation organizations, who work towards protecting the flora and fauna in Bandipur. This article will illustrate and give details about the projects undertaken by the various NGOs and the various wildlife conservation organizations.
It is again a charitable trust, based out of Bangalore. This NGO works with the communities that dwell around the forests, on the activities for providing sustainable wildlife conservation. The aim of this organization is to make the community aware of the environment and the heritage and provide them with alternate options which are eco-friendly. Their works and activities include:
- Providing of eco-chulhas.
- Carbon credit program through which the ruined forests have been afforested.
- Promoting of eco-tourism
- Gives training to the village youth on activities such as nature treks, bird watching etc.
- Gives training in making of furniture with the help of lantana. Lantana is the forest weed.
- Creation of eco-awareness.
With all these activities focused on people living around Bandipur, Junglescapes, helps in fostering healthy relationships between the people and the animals. And, their aim of preserving the rich cultural heritage is also successful. When the people around take the ownership and feel empowered, they help in safeguarding the flora and the fauna.
Junglescapes Charitable Trust
C-3, Cedar Crest, Ist Cross,
10th Main Road, Indiranagar
Bangalore 560 038 India.
Tel- +91 80 25295788
Most of the people living around the forests in the area of Bandipur collected wood for their fuel needs and let their cattle graze on the greens. This had a major effect on the flora and the ecosystem and also impacted the wildlife. And, for providing a solution to this endangering situation, Namma Sangha was formed in 2003. “Namma Sangha” means “Our Community”. And, this community, consisted of wildlife lovers who did some surveys on the living trends of the people around. And, the result was quite shocking. Almost everybody around were using the wood from the forest for their fuel needs. And, not just that, people also hunted a few animals out here for their food requirements. This again impacted the life cycle of the animals.
Namma Sangha tried to find alternate solutions for the fuel problem so that the dependency of the villagers on the wood decreased. And, this led to making people aware of LPG cylinders. They strived to make this gas available to every home around, at reasonable costs. They started to raise funds and got good support from Indian Oil Corporation, which helped in procuring and supplying of gas connections swiftly. Villagers were persuaded to switch over to the gas fuel by being lured with free stoves. With the help and support of Namma Sangha, there was less pressure on the woods. And, the ecological balance was saved.
NAMMA SANGHA, BANDIPUR
Hangala, Gundlupet Taluk,
Karnataka – 571126.
Sunita Dhairyam Artist:
Sunita is a social worker and a wildlife conservationist. She works with the local people around Bandipur and teaches them to live with harmony, togetherness and tolerance for the forest and the wildlife. She has also worked along with the medical charities and has tried to tackle the problems faced by the people here. Sunita has a charitable trust running under the name of “Mariamma Charitable trust” which gives compensations to people whose livestock have been wounded and killed by the wild cats. With this compensation, her aim is to preserve the wild cats from being killed on revenge. She also helps in immunizing the dogs so that they don’t spread diseases such as rabies. Other than all this, she also tries to help financially the students around Bandipur, who wish to study further.
Sunita Dhairyam – Mariamma Charitable Trust
Mangala Village Gundlupet Taluk
Chamrajnager District, Karnataka
India 571 126
Ayesha Prasad is a forest ecologist and has worked a lot in the forests of Nilgiris. She has been studying the various factors which disturb the deciduous forests. And, as per her studies, the factors which have caused disruption include the building of roads, grazing of livestock and the exotic plants that are invasive. Bandipur is infested by Lantana Camara, which is an invasive plant. And, this has a negative impact on the vegetation around and also the wildlife. This poses a grave threat to the forest’s ecosystems and the biodiversity here. So, for finding a solution to this problem, she has been designing a management protocol that is based on science. It involves a lot of monitoring and documentation of changes. She has also been involved with the local communities for conservation oriented development. One of her major projects includes a briquetting unit, where the Lantana would be converted into fuel so that it reduces the pressure on wood and also helps in getting rid of this invasive plant. And, through this project, she also aims to give livelihood to the women living around here.
Wildlife Trust of India:
It is again a wildlife conservation organization which aims to deal with the conservation related issues. The project, which is known as the Rapid Action Project is a part of the Wildlife Trust of India and deals with these issues on an urgent basis. This RAP reacts swiftly to the wildlife emergencies by giving out all kinds of help. There is a team of implementers throughout the country which facilitates and reaches out to any kind of conservation crisis. Also, with the increasing traffic through the forests, the number of animals being killed in accidents has also increased. So, with the help of funds provided by NGOs and Wildlife foundations, the WTI placed signage and barricades on the critical sections for spreading the awareness. And, this helped in saving animals from getting killed, while crossing the roads. Some enforcement officials were also placed who ensured that the vehicles drove in prescribed speed limits only. They have also tried to stop the proposal of the road upgrade to the national highways so that the forest area could be preserved.
Wildlife Trust of India
F-13, Sector-8, NOIDA,
Uttar Pradesh- 201301
Tel : +91-120- 4143900 (30 lines)
Fax: +91-120- 4143933
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.wti.org.in
Vanya is a project under Nature Conservation Foundation and is focused around Bandipur tiger reserve. As there are a lot of temples within the forest area, Bandipur sees a lot of pilgrims also visiting. And, this leads to the forests getting littered. Other than that, there are so many vehicles passing through these forests which damage the environment. These places also became picnic spots and a place where illegal activities like gambling etc. took place. Vanya helped in regulating the crowds in this area with the help of barricades so that the illegal activities could be stopped. Screening of vehicles was done so that only the materials required for the temple was allowed inside. And, this led to the forest areas getting cleared and number of visitors also reduced. Vanya has volunteers from all walks of life and they are trying to build a network of volunteers in the bordering villages of the Bandipur reserve. They also conduct conservation programs and support the forest departments in the dry seasons so that the wild fires could be controlled. Their key focus area is to conduct the public information campaigns and educate the public about wildlife conservation.
Praveen Ramaswamy: +91 96635 21827
Arun Simha Y.J.: +91 94801 93958
Other than these major NGOs, wildlife conservation organizations and the popular wildlife activists, there are also few others who have been trying to help conserve wildlife. There are a group of authors who have published a journal named Animal Conservation. This journal is co-authored by the authors, Lauretta, Madhusudan, Goswami and Karanth. It talks about the automated process with which the male elephants can be identified. And, their methods involve photographs that are taken on the roads and water holes. The morphological features of each elephant were grouped into categories like fixed traits, variable ear traits and the tail traits. Age and the height were also noted and an identity code was created automatically for each elephant. With the help of this, the density of the elephants was calculated and their movements could be tracked.
Wildlife Conservation Foundation:
This started way back in the 1960s and aims to protect the tigers and other wildlife. In Bandipur, they have worked on some prominent projects including conserving tiger population, save elephant project and
Road Kills of Wildlife at Bandipur National Park
Wildlife Conservation Foundation
# 398/1, Shivayan mutt Road,
Devaraja Mohalla (Next to Jaganmohan Palace),
Mysore – 570 024
Phone & Fax : +91 0821 242 0011
Mobile : +919448780068, +919845121800
A very famous Wildlife conservation organization, the World Wide Fund for Nature is also involved in some of the projects in Bandipur. It has been one of the instrumentalists in the wildlife conservation and has taken up a lot of steps for protecting the various species of animals such as tigers and Rhinos.
This is one of those Projects which have been initiated by the Indian Government. And, the main aim of this project is to protect the tigers from going extinct. The project has implemented a lot of schemes for ensuring that the wildlife and the tigers are protected.
These were some of the wildlife conservation programs, in effect, in Bandipur. Hopefully, the work of these NGOs will not go waste and the wildlife conservation will be taken more seriously by the people. We have to save our wildlife and also our green forests. We cannot see our famed national animal, Tiger, go extinct.
To find out more about the various NGO’s work in Bandipur, or to support their efforts or volunteer your services, contact them.