The Forest Department and experts from Kerala and northeastern States will begin the maiden survey of butterfly species in the Papikonda National Park (PNP) on Thursday. The PNP spreads over 1012.86 square kilometres in East and West Godavari districts.
The experts led by Kerala-based environmental forum — Warblers and Waders — would carry out the survey with an aim to record all the species of butterfly, apart from an exclusive study on the “Migratory species of Butterfly” in the national park in the Papikonda hill range in the Eastern Ghats.
Divisional Forest Officer (Rajahmundry-Wildlife) Anant Shankar told The Hindu, “The four-day survey , from December 12 to15, is the maiden survey during which the entire national park will be explored, documenting the butterfly species.” He said that the survey would target identifying migrant butterfly species.
“A total of 50 experts, including ornithologists, have been roped in the scientific survey. The findings and report of the survey will be presented at the ‘Conference of Parties to Convention on Migratory Species’ at the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species to be held in Gandhinagar in February 2020,” added Mr. Anant Shankar.
The scientific exercise will offer a picture of the existing biodiversity of the park. The diversity of butterfly species would be considered as a health indicator of the national park.
Declared as a national park in 2018, preliminary studies have recorded and photographed over 80 species of butterflies. The Forest Department officials say that the park is the home for 121 butterfly species as per their internal studies.