Rhinos to be re-introduced in Uttarakhand

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News: The Uttarakhand State Wildlife Board has cleared a proposal by the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) to introduce rhinoceroses in the Corbett Tiger Reserve (CTR)

Facts:

About Jim Corbett National Park

  • Jim Corbet National Park was established in 1936 as Hailey National Park- the first national park in India.
  • It is located in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand.
  • The park was declared a Tiger Reserve in 1973- the first to come under the Project Tiger initiative.

Additional Information:

The Great one-horned Rhinoceros (Indian rhinoceros):

  • It is listed as Vulnerable in the IUCN Red List.
  • There are about 2,600 rhinos in India, with more than 90% of the population concentrated in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park. Outside Kaziranga, rhinos are found in West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, and Bihar.

Conservation Programmes in India

Indian Rhino Vision (IRV) 2020 programme

  • The program was launched in 2005 by Assam Forest Department in partnership with WWF-India, the International Rhino Foundation, and US Fish & Wildlife Service.
  • It aims to attain a wild population of at least 3,000 greater one-horned rhinos spread over seven protected areas in Assam by the year 2020.

New Delhi Declaration on Asian Rhinos 2019: Under the declaration, India will collaborate with Bhutan, Nepal, Indonesia, and Malaysia for conservation and protection of three Asian rhino species-

  • Greater one-horned rhinoceros,
  • Javan rhinoceros( listed as Critically Endangered in the IUCN Red List) and
  • Sumatran rhinoceros (listed as Critically Endangered in the IUCN Red List).

National Rhino Conservation Strategy for India: it has been launched by Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. It aims at strengthening rhino protection and expanding present distribution range by at least 5%

Other Rhino Species: 

  • Southern White Rhino:: It is listed as Near Threatened in IUCN Red List. 
  • Northern White Rhino: Functionally extinct. 
  • Black Rhino: It is listed as Critically Endangered in the IUCN Red List.

Wildlife Institute of India (WII) 

  • WII is an autonomous institution under the Ministry of Environment Forest and Climate Change. It was established in 1982 and is based in Dehradun, Uttarakhand.
  • It offers training programs, academic courses and advisory in wildlife research and management.