Press Releases

Protected Areas hold hope for the endangered dhole

(March 04, 2019) Protected areas play an important role in sustaining dhole populations in the Western Ghats of Karnataka.Bengaluru, 28th February 2019: Loss of forest cover and livestock grazing activity are affecting dhole populations in Karnataka's Western Ghats. However, protected areas offer hope in ensuring that the dhole doesn't go extinct. A decade-long study led by scientists from University of Florida (USA), Wildlife Conservation Society-India, Centre for Wildlife Studies and National Centre for Biolog...

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Attacks on people: Leopards affect smaller areas than tigers and (African) lions

(December 14, 2018) Distinct patterns emerge around human injuries and deaths caused by leopards, lions and tigers in three countries  Using disease outbreak dynamics, a novel approach, scientists Craig Packer, Nicholas Fountain- Jones including WCS - India scientists Shweta Shivakumar and Vidya Athreya, look at the spatial characteristics of large cat attacks on humans, over time.This analysis was from three countries - India, Nepal and Tanzania using 908 confirmed cases of injuries and deaths of humans due t...

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Let’s leave wildlife alone

(August 16, 2018) Bengaluru, 16th August: Uniting a calf with the mother cow is simple and joyous. However, while the joy is comparable the scenario is entirely different when attempting the same with an elephant calf. For one, chances of finding an elephant calf stranded in the forest are slim, unless for a good reason. Even in such a case, uniting it with its herd is just not as easy as dangling a key chain and luring it to a herd nearby. The dangers are manifold.But the way this is portrayed by Renault India i...

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Woodlands in an agricultural matrix maintain functionality of a wintering bird community

(August 08, 2018) Bengaluru, 6th August: Woodlands in agricultural lands surrounding a forested Protected Area support multiple guilds of a wintering bird community, a new study finds. The results provide insights into the role of mixed agricultural–forest landscapes in the conservation of different facets of biodiversity.This study builds on the premise that while efforts to protect biodiversity in tropical forests have largely relied on the establishment of Protected Areas (PAs), there are limits to how m...

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Worship of ‘Waghoba’, the large cat deity, and tolerance towards large cats in Western India

(June 12, 2018) BENGALURU, 11th June 2018: Against the background of rising media reportage on human-large cat conflict, a recent study calls attention to a contrasting view where even today many traditional communities in India worship ‘Waghoba’ the large cat deity and seek its protection. Based on a survey conducted in parts of Maharashtra and Goa, it notes how people have been sharing space with the large cat and continue to do so.In parts of Goa, elaborate rituals are held twice a year when the ...

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Small projects, big concerns: Impacts of Small Hydropower Projects on fish communities in the Western Ghats

(May 31, 2018) 31st May 2018, Bengaluru:  The first ever scientific study in India of Small Hydropower Projects (SHPs), has revealed that despite being promoted as clean energy, these plants have significant ecological impacts, and cause alterations in stream geometry, water quality and freshwater fish communities.The work recently published in the journal Aquatic Conservation was conducted by scientists from Wildlife Conservation Society – India Program (WCS-India Program), National Centre for Biol...

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Trends and pathways for ecotourism research in India

(May 26, 2018) 25th May 2018, Bengaluru: A new study on ecotourism titled ‘Trends and pathways for ecotourism research in India’ has identified research gaps requiring immediate attention in terms of scientific data and analysis of the economics and conservation around ecotourism in India.The authors analysed and reviewed 30 peer-reviewed studies on ecotourism published since 2005. Studies were categorised into three broad themes - those that assessed the potential for ecotourism at specific sites,...

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Livestock sustains leopard populations in the tea gardens of West Bengal, study finds

(April 14, 2018) BENGALURU, 6th April 2018: A new study on leopards that inhabit the tea-garden and forest mosaic landscape of West Bengal finds that they are highly adaptable to living in human-use areas, and that their prey includes high numbers of livestock like cattle and goats. The study is a part of WCS India’s long-term research on the socio ecology of human-wildlife interactions. The persistence of large carnivores in human-use areas can lead to conservation and management problems globally. L...

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Birds and Beans: Study Shows Which Type of Coffee Plantations are Best for Bird Diversity

(February 20, 2018) Bengaluru, 19th February, 2018: It’s an age-old debate for coffee lovers. Which is better: Arabica beans with their sweeter, softer taste, or the bold, deep flavor of Robusta beans? A new study by Wildlife Conservation Society, Princeton University, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison appearing in the journal Scientific Reports has taken the question to unlikely coffee aficionados: birds.The researchers, led by WCS Associate Conservation Scientist Dr. Krit...

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Statement by Country Director of WCS India regarding FIR wrongly filed against Karnataka Forest Officers

(January 31, 2018) BENGALURU, 30 January 2018: On behalf of the Wildlife Conservation Society – India, I would like to issue a statement regarding the recent FIR filed against three forest officers of the Karnataka Forest Department, Kodagu district. We understand that the FIR has been registered against the three forest officers in a case where a person was killed by a wild elephant due to a serious conflict situation.  We wish to express our deepest sympathies to the bereaved family.We are aware of th...

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