India, Bhutan, China join hands to save ‘black-necked cranes’

April 23rd, 2011 - 7:15 pm ICT by ANI  

New Delhi, Apr 22(ANI): Union Environment and Forests Minister Jairam Ramesh has said that the conservation of ‘black-necked cranes’ will not only save the endangered species, but also boost regional cooperation and forge strong bonds between India and its neighbours.

Ramesh said this at the inaugural function of a two-day workshop on “Regional Cooperation for Conservation of Black-necked Crane” at WWF Headquarters in New Delhi.

The workshop is being organized by the World Wide Fund for Nature-India (WWF) in collaboration with the Environment and Forests Ministry, the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and the Indian Bird Conservation Network (IBCN).

The Minister said it was a very rare opportunity that for the first time trilateral cooperation in terms of India, China and Bhutan coming together to save the endangered crane was seen at one platform.

Black-necked crane, the last of the world’s cranes to be discovered by the scientific community in the northeastern Tibet in 1876, is a highly endangered species in the world.

Mainly found in India, China and Bhutan, particularly in the Tibetan Plateau from eastern Ladakh to northern Sichuan province in China, the cranes have eluded man’s scrutiny and have retained its age-old aura of mystery and charm.

In India, eastern Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir is the only known breeding place outside China.

Ramesh further said that by saving the cranes “we are not only saving rare birds, but the entire ecosystem and specially high attitude wetland ecosystems”.

He said that geography has been created by man, but nature does not recognize it and so do the birds who do not recognize the human boundaries.

He stressed that environment, birds and biodiversity can help in forging links and bonds with India’s neighbours as India has trans-boundary ecosystem with Mynamar, Bangladesh, Nepal, and even Pakistan.

Ramesh said on May 18, the Environment Ministers of eight SAARC countries, including Afghanistan, are meeting in Thimpu, Bhutan, and it would be his top most priority to see how India can lead in trans-boundary eco-management and other related issues.

He added that the black-necked cranes represented every aspect of this kind of regional initiative.

The total population of black-necked cranes is around 11,000, according to the latest census. (ANI)

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