News: The Asiatic Lion Census is scheduled to take place in May 2020
- The Gujarat forest department conducts lion census every five years in Asiatic Lion Landscape, which includes Gir National Park and Sanctuary.
About Asiatic Lion
- It is listed as ‘Endangered’ under the IUCN Red List.
- It is listed in Schedule-I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972
- The only surviving free-ranging population of the Asiatic lion exists in the Gir forest, Gujarat.
- According to the 2015 Lion Census, there are 523 Asiatic Lions.
Note: The African Lion is listed as Vulnerable under the IUCN Red List.
Gir National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary:
- It is situated in the Saurashtra region of Gujarat. The Gir National park was established in 1965.
- It is part of the Kathiawar-Gir dry deciduous forests Ecoregion
- The major perennial rivers of the Gir region are Hiran, Shetrunji, Datardi, Shingoda, Machhundri, Godavari and Raval.
‘Asiatic Lion Conservation Project’
- Launched by Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, it aims to protect and conserve the Asiatic Lion.
- It is a 3 year-long conservation project. It focuses on
o disease management,
o habitat improvement and eco-development,
o robust wildlife health service with a dedicated veterinary institute,
o addressing to man-wild animal conflict issues,
o voluntary relocation of Protect Area inhabitants ( Maldhari tribe),
o monitoring and tracking of animals,o creating a wildlife crime cell