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Entries for May 2019

Whose Park is it Anyway?

Whose Park is it Anyway?
(May 28, 2019) A unique island of biodiversity within the bustling Mumbai city, the SGNP is a study in so many contrasts.IUCN estimates that there are 1,300 species of plants, more than 150 species of butterflies, around 40 varieties of snakes and mammals and more than 250 species of birds here at the Sanjay Gandhi National Park in Mumbai.A national park or an urban city park? A tough answer to give after a brief visit to the Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Borivali in Mumbai. The place looks much like Bangalore&...

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To Skin a Cat: An Amateur Biologist’s First Autopsy

To Skin a Cat: An Amateur Biologist’s First Autopsy
(May 21, 2019) Pulled in for an emergency, a field biologist finds a scalpel thrust into her hands and told to extract pieces of the intestine and lung tissues from the carcass of a dead tigress for the pathology tests.Written by Priya RanganathanFive-thirty in the morning is far too early for a telephone call.I cracked open an eyelid and picked up the buzzing mobile from the bedside table. “Hello?”“Madam, get up, you have duty,” replied the voice of the office driver, Javed Bhai.I...

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Deadly Diets: Protect the Pangolin

Deadly Diets: Protect the Pangolin
(May 17, 2019) By Divya Krishnan©PBSPangolins are the introverts of the animal kingdom. They are nocturnal, solitary and shy creatures and for this very reason, remain elusive to the scientific community at large. Amongst the 8 species surviving across Asia and Africa, they range from a weight of 1.6kgs to a maximum of 33 kgs and are coloured in the pale yellows and browns of spring, to the olive tones of autumn. Imagine an artichoke that walks, you now have a pretty good idea of what these beautiful scal...

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The Man with a Plan

The Man with a Plan
(May 11, 2019) Written by Anisha IyerSurendra Kumar IFSA young boy living on the outskirts of a forest area used to help his father keep wildlife away from their crops. These were farmlands prone to wild boars, deers, sambars and sloth bears. Little did this young man know that he would grow up to be the Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife) and Chief Wildlife Warden of Kerala, Mr. Surendra Kumar. Born and brought up in Bihar, Surendra Kumar has always been close to nature, which has struck a fasci...

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Icons of Anamalai – Lion Tailed Macaque

Icons of Anamalai – Lion Tailed Macaque
(May 07, 2019) Written by Ashni DhawaleIn the remote rainforests of the Western Ghats lives one of the most rare and unique of primates – the lion-tailed macaque. With a furless black face, expressive eyes, and a thick, shiny coat of black fur, this macaque gets its name from the mane of silver and grey that surrounds its face and tail that ends in a tuft like that of a lion’s.© Prakash RamakrishnanConsidered by scientists as the only truly arboreal macaque on Earth, these elusive creatur...

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From forests of Wayanad to classrooms of Maldives

From forests of Wayanad to classrooms of Maldives
(May 03, 2019) A former resident of Wayanad wildlife sanctuary who accepted voluntary relocation recounts trials and tribulations of life back then.As a teenager talking and walking through the forests with friends one evening, he had a near-death experience when chased by an elephant. “I very narrowly escaped death,” says Shibu Appu, a school teacher in a government school in Maldives where he now teaches English. His family living in the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary (WWS) accepted the government pa...

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