deserted: The houses built for Special Tiger Protection Force have no takers.

A residential complex constructed at a cost of Rs one crore exclusively for the Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF), the squad created to prevent wildlife crimes, in the Bandipur Tiger Reserve has been abandoned by the Forest Department due to ‘water scarcity.’

Plan to deny fuel to vehicles sans emission test gathers dust

The Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has sent a proposal to the State government to stop fuel supply to those vehicles which do not undergo regular emission tests.

Forest department helpless in checking jumbos straying out

Frequent transfer of officers posted to Bannerghatta National Park (BNP) and, increasing human habitat has made the Forest department helpless in checking the growing man-animal conflict. This has resulted in elephants straying out of the forests in the region, wildlife experts opine.

The Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom) has said that it does not intend to purchase solar power from private, small-scale generators in the City, on the ground that it is not cost effective.

The State-owned company has virtually shut its doors on many private generators, including several entrepreneurs using solar photovoltaic panels to generate electricity, hoping to sell it to Bescom.

Great Indian Bustard, long-billed vulture spotted in a month’s span

Bellary is turning out to be an ornithologists’ dream destination. Great Indian Bustards (GIBs) were sighted a few days ago at Chelugurki village, 20 km from Bellary and 60 km from Siruguppa. Long-billed vultures had been spotted last month. Dwindling numbers of GIBs is a matter of concern across the country and their sightings have become a rarity.

Recommends withdrawal of forest clearance

The Elephant Task Force constituted by the High Court has recommended cancellation of the lease granted to mushrooming mini hydel power projects in the Western Ghats, particularly in Sakleshpur region. Contrary to the contentions that there is not much forest cover in Sakleshpur region where some mini hydel power plants have been permitted, the report states that 65 per cent of the landscape is under forest cover and lies along the crest line of the Western Ghats.

Stone-crushing units continue to operate in defiance of court order

Several government orders, verdicts of the courts, including directions from the Supreme Court, seem to have had no impact on the quarries and stone-crushing units around the Bannerghatta National Park (BNP). They have not only indulged in the illegal blasting of rock and quarrying, but have also been threatening and abusing people who raise a voice against them.

Vehicular density, construction activity, use of diesel generator sets and loudspeakers blamed

Bangalore, long considered the garden city, now has a dubious distinction. It has been ranked the country’s seventh noisiest city and the tag is bound to worry the citizens, long concerned about rising levels of air pollution and ever-increasing number of vehicles. At 65 decibels, the City’s noise level has exceeded permissible levels in residential and commercial zones.

Birds spotted by wildlife enthusiasts in remote village

A few months after Ramadevarabetta in Ramanagar district was designated the country’s first vulture sanctuary, wildlife enthusiasts have come across a large congregation of critically endangered vultures in a remote village bordering Bellary and Raichur districts. The team of wildlife enthusiasts comprising - Santosh Martin, Honourary Wildlife Warden, Bellary; K S Abdul Samad Kottur, a wildlife activist; local naturalist Anand Kundargi and budding naturalists and photographers Sunaina Martin and Sonia Martin – has discovered 16 long-billed vultures Gyps Indicus and four Egyptian vultures during their expedition to discover vultures in the remote parts of Bellary district.

SC ban hasn’t affected conservation

The theory that a ban on tiger tourism will affect the conservation of the critically endangered big cat was rubbished by the State Forest department, which claimed that it was able to initiate protective measures without funds from tourism. The Supreme Court’s interim order to ban tiger tourism in the last week of July created a flutter. Several wildlife enthusiasts and resort owners predicted almost “the beginning of the end of tiger conservation” in the country. Many of them claimed they supported conservation by sharing their revenue which will add to funds for conservation.