Saturday, May 19, 2012

Chennai Champions Conservation

National Biodiversity Authority

The National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) was established in 2003 to implement India’s Biological Diversity Act (2002). The NBA is a Statutory, Autonomous Body and it performs facilitative, regulatory and advisory functions for the Government of India on issues of conservation, sustainable use of biological resources and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the use of biological resources.

Centre for Environment Education

Centre for Environment Education (CEE), is a Centre of Excellence, for Environmental Education and is supported by the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF), Government of India. CEE is affiliated to the Nehru Foundation for Development. The primary objective of the Centre is to improve public awareness and understanding of the environment with a view to promoting the conservation and sustainable use of nature and natural resources, leading to a better environment and a better quality of life. To this end, CEE develops innovative programmes and educational material, and builds capacity in the field of education for sustainable development (ESD). 

International Day for Biological Diversity

You may be aware that the United Nations has proclaimed May 22 as the International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB), to commemorate the adoption of the text of the Convention of Biological Diversity. Marine Biodiversity is the theme for this year's International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB). The Designation of IDB 2012 on the theme of marine ecosystems provides everyone interested in marine life, the opportunity to raise awareness of the issue and induce practical action.

Attempting to create a Guinness World Records™ 

As a part of the National Celebrations of the International Day for Biological Diversity, NBA is organising a series of programmes for youth and general public. CEE Tamil Nadu, the Tamil Nadu State Office of the Centre for Environment Education (CEE) in collaboration with the National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) is attempting to create a Guinness World Records™ for the largest handprint painting in an area of approximately 6000 m² in an event organised, at the Marina Beach, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India on 22nd May 2012.

The initiative is to garner public support and commitment for the conservation of Biodiversity. A special pledge has been developed for the citizens to express their solidarity for the efforts to conserve biodiversity. As a testimony to the commitment, we encourage every citizen to stand up for the cause for the Conservation of Biodiversity by reading the pledge and placing their handprints on one of the world’s largest canvass being developed in Chennai.

Some parts of the canvass would be taken around to different places of the city and one canvass would specially be placed at the following sites:
  1. Near the Light House, in Marina Beach, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  2. Near the Marina Swimming Pool, Marina Beach, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  3. Elliot's Beach, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  4. Thiruvanmiyur Beach Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Come join the effort in conserving the World Biodiversity and be a part of the Guinness Book of World Records and experience life turning bright, and provide everlasting joy for the future!

  • Come lets commit to conservation and get the beautiful earth back!
  • Invite and mobilize all your friends to give a hand to conservation of biodiversity!
  • Date: 22.05.2012
  • Time: 04:30 to 20:30 Hrs

Needless to say, Life is bright, when the efforts are right! :~)

Looking forward to seeing you all make a visible (:~)) commitment to conserving biodiversity!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Lion King!

Kevin Richardson, animal ranger in Lanseria, South Africa.
HE sleeps with lions, wrestles with cheetahs and hugs hyenas - meet the "Lion Whisperer". Thirty-two-year-old Kevin Richardson spends his days - and nights - curled up with massive cats as part of his job at The Lion Park, at Lanseria, outside Johannesburg.

The South African lion whisperer has a natural affinity with some of the most dangerous animals on the planet, many of whom he names and raises by hand from birth.

"I don't use sticks, whips or chains - just patience,'' he says. "It may be dangerous, but this is a passion for me, not a job.

"I have to rely on my instincts to gauge an animal or a situation, and I will not approach a creature if something doesn't feel right.''

Mr Richardson began working with big cats - and particularly lions and hyenas - 10 years ago after quitting his career in physiology, where he worked with patients who had undergone surgery.

He wants to educate people about the big cats in a bid to save these beautiful animals.

Part of his approach is to bond intimately with the animals and they learn to treat him as a member of their pride.

"They see me as a creature they have adopted. I have also been an adopted parent in a lot of instances,'' Mr Richardson recently told South African television show Carte Blanche.

"I am someone they relate to. I enrich their lives. When I come here it's fun: we take all these animals out into the big, open spaces. If these animals are going to be kept in a captive situation, don't they deserve to have the best care, the best entertainment, the best lives?''

Mr Richardson's job is inherently dangerous. The lions at Lanseria often weigh more than 220kg and the hyenas, which are notoriously unpredictable, have the ability to bite through thick steel.

And all the big cats are fiercely protective of their young - but Mr Richardson has few fears.

"With all the animals I'm near the top (in dominance terms). You have got to be near the top. The moment they see you as a lower-order figure, they will challenge you,'' he said.

Friday, September 04, 2009

Horrors at Hatchery!

Would a factory of King Herod be similar to this or would it be more merciful. We could run a debate on this!

I really pity these poor animals, and for once am extremely proud to be a vegetarian…!

For everyone who has not had any interactions with chicken, besides chewing them from their plate, this is a must watch video! Heart breaking! The scenes that show them de-beaking and grounding the gentle chicks, is outright disgusting!

One can understand the need to separate males and females, but acting like they are not even a live breathing animal with feelings is absolutely deplorable :~( It's like Hitler’s holocaust of sorts for the chickens...

This is the very essence of an unsustainable culture.

God, how horrible! Tweety, NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! are how, one would feel like screaming! Hang your head in shame if after having seen these horrific images, and you still continue to eat animals and their products!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Thank You Again!

Just a short note to wish you all a Happy Independence Day and you get time to share the weekend finds you with good friends, family, and in good spirits, even if you're not celebrating anything or are celebrating something else.

I wanted to add my share of appreciation for many of you out there, who have helped me stay sane and smiling after the accident, that happened 15 years before on this very day, and my life took a complete turn. Over the last 12 years,

I am glad to inform you all with great pleasure that I have seen some success, some failures in this competition to survive… I guess, I’ve emerged a winner thanks to many of you. The first few names that come to my mind are: Bhaskar Bhai Dave a good Samaritan, who took it upon himself and rushed me to the hospital at Ahmedabad. Srinivasan and Kumar my brothers who encouraged me to survive and pulled me up from whatever state I was in. My wife Sangeetha and Son Suraj have turned me positive and look up to more life ahead.

My doctors, Dr. Ramesh Viradia, the Ortho and Dr. Yashwant Doshi who extended a helping hand more than just as a doctor….

A million and more thanks are due to several of my Friends. My special gratitude to Sunil, Meena, Shanmugam, The Khannas, Manimozhi and her kids Suganthi and Revathi, Greena, Thomas & Fen (TG), Ambika, Hema and Kirtida who went way beyond to put a smile back on my face and lent their shoulders to cry, weep and wail… Meena and Mamata thanks for having faith in me through the most insane period of my life. These days I am able to put the training I’ve had from you and have become able to put into practice in line with my responsibilities. Without your guidance, I would not have made it. Thank you again

Many a young children (who are in their prime youth these days) Suzianna, Sanjana, Chaithri, Saakshi, Fen, Revathi, Suganthi, Vikram… the endless list, whose cheerful smile and high spirit smiles and greetings have cheered me all along. Now my son, Suraj has taken that responsibility all upon him and does it with amicable ease.

I cannot also forget to remember the cheerful lunching moments in office with Gopal, Sarala, Ambika, Hema, Kalyani, Takorayan, Minaxi, Priya, Manisha Bhana, Radha, Kamlesh, who cheered me many times through the Pain-O-Therapy days...
Then finally, I would like to thank my Physiotherapists Padmashri whose high spirit of hardwork helped me ease out of those harder days of “bucling-legs”with ease.

Thank you all once again!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Saving the Good, the Bad--And the Ugly

A hyena might not be as adorable as a tiger cub or dolphin, but a few champions of nature's endangered ugly underdogs say the hideous are just as worthy of protection as the huggable: By Katherine Harmon ( From The Scientific American)

What happens when an animal that needs saving isn't as cute as a tiger cub? Some biologists explain why human aesthetic preference has played such a big role in protecting the panda--over stranger species like this one, the helmeted hornbill.

The bulbous purple burrowing frog may not have made it onto any awww-inspiring tote bags like the unequivocally adorable giant panda. But, an increasing number of people are arguing, the humble frog—and other more homely creatures—is at least equally worth rescuing from the brink of extinction.

One of those people is Nathan Yaussy, an ecology graduate student at Kent State University in Ohio and the creator of the EUT—Endangered Ugly Things blog (recently profiled in The Washington Post). "My goal is just to let people know that these things are out there, and they're just as important as the panda," he says.

A handful of animals that are easier on the eye than, say, the aye-aye, have gotten the lion's share of publicity, funds and legislation for their salvation. Many so-called "charismatic mega-fauna," which conservationists select as mascots—or "poster children", are chosen for their looks rather than their ecological importance, notes biologist David Stokes of the University of Washington in Bothell.

"If we could raise the ecological literacy of the public and our officials to see beyond the surface value of these animals to their ecological or even utilitarian role," Stokes says, "that would be really valuable." Many endangered insects may actually be more ecologically "important" than an affable Galápagos penguin. But biologists, he notes, often neglect to take preference into account.

Certainly looks can be a matter of personal preference, but the surefire way that an animal finds its way into the public's collective heart seems to be by having infantile qualities—big eyes, round face, wobbly gait (a phenomenon called neoteny). But, as Stokes found from his research, no hard-and-fast rule dictates which animals gain wide appeal: "Really tiny differences among species can have huge effects on how much appeal they have," he says. He studied a range of penguin species and found that those with patches of bright colour received by far and away the most visual coverage.
Yaussy does admit that his method of highlighting especially bizarre animals may not be all that different than that of the panda-promoting World Wildlife Fund, a frequent target of his playful admonishment. The panda is the federation's "flagship species," he explains, which it uses with other charismatic creatures to promulgate the idea that saving the rainforest will, by extension, also save these beautiful animals. Whereas the WWF is "putting on the pretty face, I'm trying to pull in the 10-year-old boy in all of us to say, 'That's so cool!'" he remarks. At the end of the day, his hope is that "by saving the habitat, you'll save everything—the pretty things, the ugly things."

Stokes doesn't subscribe to that tidy idea entirely. Recent research has shown that the habitat of one highly endangered species rarely overlaps with that of another, he says. But he doesn't discount the usefulness of a central species for the purposes of education. The Stag Beetle Project, for instance, which is headed by the London Wildlife Trust, has helped raise awareness—and sterling pounds—for a large, fierce-looking insect.

By and large, he says, communities that can rally around one particular species, whether it's a monkey or a mollusc, do a better job adopting policies to protect biodiversity in ge
neral. But the key, he notes, is to be aware of our natural preference for some animals' appearance over others.

"This matters because people are going to increasingly be making the decision about
what species survive and what don't," Stokes says. "So we want to be able to make sure that we make educated decisions."