A signature campaign for saving the Amrabad Tiger Reserve from uranium mining has been launched by the Hyderabad Tiger Conservation Society (HyTiCoS) as a prelude to the International Tiger Day on July 29.
The campaign was unveiled during the Tiger Day celebrations at the KBR National Park on Saturday, informed HyTiCoS director Imran Siddiqui.
Over 400 children from 14 schools had a day out at the park, where they arrived to participate in the activities organised by HyTiCoS and Wildlife Conservation Society-India in association with the Telangana Forest Department and WWF-India.
The activities included nature based learning, games, wildlife quiz and talks focused on creating awareness among youngsters and citizens on the significance of conserving tigers.
Attention was paid on explaining the benefits accruing from conservation of tigers and their habitats, based on a study conducted by Indian Institute of Forest Management. It includes assessment of 25 ecosystem services from six tiger reserves in different tiger landscapes across the country.
The children were made aware of the ecosystem services include water provisioning, pollination, fresh air, recreational value, spiritual value, nutrient cycling, fisheries, timber, fodder/grazing, besides other stock benefits like carbon sequestration, gene-pool protection, standing timber, and biological control among others. Based on this assessment, it is estimated that each tiger is worth ₹250 crore and each tiger reserve including Amrabad Tiger Reserve is worth more than ₹1,150 crores of flow benefits and ₹30,000 crore of stock benefits.
British Deputy High Commissioner Andrew Fleming, who attended as guest for the occasion, expressed happiness at the increase in tiger numbers, from 1,411 in 2006 to 2,226 in 2014.
PCCFs P.K. Jha, Raghuveer, and R. Sobha and Additional PCCF (Wildlife) Munindra were among the forest officials who attended the event.