Anthropomorphism

Raven world’s second smartest creature

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 20, 2007

Blog

Birdbrain is no longer a sign of stupidity; indeed it could be a sign of surprising intelligence. 


Scientists Bernd Heinrich and Thomas Bugnyar reveal a series of experiments that back the idea that ravens are the brainboxes of the natural world. "These birds use logic to solve problems and some of their abilities even surpass those of the great apes."


The experiment they outline involved ravens that were allowed to sit on perches from which pieces of meat dangled from string. To get a treat, a raven had to perform a complex series of actions: pull up some of the string, place a loop on the perch and hold it with a claw, then pull up another section of string and hold that loop on the perch. By repeating the process half a dozen times, a raven could reach the end of the string and get the meat.


Source:  Guardian Newspapers Limited April, 2007

Climate change and Global Warming

Delhi

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 19, 2007

Blog

The CO2 levels are going up by 2ppm per year, with Delhi adding 963 new cars daily to the city’s fleet. To ensure that the temperature does not go up by more than two degrees by the turn of the century, we have to ensure that CO2 levels stay below 450 ppm. Vehicular traffic is the single largest contributor of CO2 in the atmosphere.

Even the trees lining the road cannot help unless we reduce the number of vehicles.

Source: Times of India, May4, 2007

Climate change and Global Warming

A political challenge?

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 18, 2007

Blog

"Developing  world can leapfrog to a new energy future-from no fuel to the most advanced fuel. The biofuel can come from non-edible tree crops-jatropha in India, for example-grown on wasteland, which will also employ people.

This fuel market will demand a different business model. It cannot be conducted on the basis of the so-called free market model, which is based on economies of scale and, therefore, demands consolidation and leads to uncompetitive practices. In today’s model, a company will grow the crops, extract the oil, transport it first to refineries and then back to consumers.

The new generation biofuel business needs a model of distributed growth in which we have millions of growers and millions of distributors and millions of users. Remember, climate change is not a technological fix but a political challenge. Biofuel is part of a new future."

-Sunita Narain
Source: http://www.downtoearth.org.in/cover_nl.asp?mode=2

 


 

Climate change and Global Warming

Godavari Basin, IIT Delhi and UK

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 17, 2007

Blog

A regional climate change study is being done on the Godavari (Andhra Pradesh) basin by IIT Delhi and UK based scientists.

The Godavari basin extends over three million sq.km and is nearly 10 % of the total area of India. Because of its size, it provides a diversity of eco systems that will enable scientists to carefully choose sites to study interlinked water dependent eco systems like forests, wetlands and cropping systems.

Source: Hindustan Times, 23 March , 2007

 

Wildlife , Forest Laws

Constitutional Provisions in India

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 17, 2007

Blog

Article 48A and Part IV A of the Constitution grant environment supremacy over development. The Constitution, on a sensitive provision in Article 48A states:"The State shall endeavour to protect and improve the environment and to safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country."

Article 51A (g) creates a fundamental duty in every individual to obey the mandates of environment and ecology.

Wildlife , Forest Laws

Environmental Law

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 16, 2007

Blog

Environmental law in India has developed partly in response to demands by environmental groups and partly as a result of international conventions. The laws to protect bio diversity were a direct outcome of the International Convention on Biodiversity.

After the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro, a number of laws were changed or new rules drafted to conform to international agreements. Local environment groups played an important role in bringing in the Coastal Regulation Zone Rules, an outcome of growing awareness of the impact of development along the coasts of marine resources.

Sourece: The Hindu, 23, March, 2007

nature/wildlife films

Wildlife Asia Film Festival

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 15, 2007

Blog

Wildlife Asia Film Festival took place in March 2007 in Singapore.

"Cherub of the Mist" by Bedi Films (India)won the "Best Asian Film " award. "Village of Dust, City of Water" by Moving Images(India) won the award for the Best Environmental Film.

Naresh Bedi and Mike Pandey were given special awards for contribution to film making.

The following films/programs were selected for screening at the festival.

 "The King is Dying" by Special Investigation Team, CNN-IBN

 "Man Elephant Conflict" by NDTV

 "Ganga is Dying" by Special investigation Team, CNN-IBN

 

Bio-Diversity

Slow Loris

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 15, 2007

Blog

Slow Lorises need your help!

The 14th Conference of Parties to CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Fauna and Flora) takes place in The Netherlands next month. Up for consideration is Cambodia’s petition to transfer this noctural Asian primate to Appendix I. This would mean the animal is considered threatened with extinction and CITES would prohibit international trade except, for instance, for scientific research.

Two NGOs, Care for the Wild International and PROWILDLIFE, are seeking support for the petition. For details on what you can do to help check here:


http://www.wildasia.net/main.cfm?page=contact&contactID=1704

 

Wildlife Poaching

Kaziranga National Park

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 14, 2007

Blog

Kaziranga National Park is a clear case where hard work of the forest staff went unrewarded and unnoticed while the Park had the distinction of protecting a healthy population of rhinos.

The recent poaching of six rhinos has brought to light some glaring lapses. ’Seven or eight years ago when the Park was spread over 430 sq.km, it had a sanctioned staff strength of 487’. After the addition of six new portions, the Park area is is now over 1,000 sq.km. The team strength-376.

International gangs with links to China and the Middle East( rhino horn sheaths are poular there) operate in Kaziranga. Whie the police have arrested 700 poachers since 1975, only one has been convicted so far.

Source: The Indian Express 19 April 2007

Climate change and Global Warming

Sunderbans Tigers

Posted by Susan Sharma on May 14, 2007

Blog

In the Sunderbans, both man and animal face a threat from rise in sea levels. A 10-year study in and around the Bay of Bengal has already revealed that the sea is rising at 3.14mm a year against a global average of 2mm.

"Oceanographers have estimated that 15% of the landmass will be lost by 2020 and this will have a devastating impact on both tigers and humans".

Source: WWF-India




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