18 November 2020.
The National Action Plan for Vulture Conservation, 2020-25 was recently approved by National Board for Wild life. The plan suggests that new veterinary Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAID) should be tested on vultures before they are commercially released.
- The new plan automatically removes veterinary use of a drug if it is found to be toxic to vultures.
- This is will be facilitated by Drugs Controller General of India.
- Under the plan, every state will host at least one vulture safe zone to conserve the remnant population of vultures in the state.
- These centres will facilitate conservation and breeding of vultures.
- A coordinated Nation-wide vulture counting is to be conducted by the Bombay Natural History Society, Forest Department, non-profit organisations, Research Institute, etc.
- These countings are to be conducted at regular intervals.
The Vulture Multi-Species Action Plan:
- This plan was adopted at the Convention for the Conservation of Migratory Species (CMS) held in 2017.
- The first strategy of the plan was launched at the CMS COP 13 held in Gandhinagar, in Feb 2020.
- The major objectives of the plan are to reduce the mortality caused due to unintentional toxic substances, to reduce mortality due to NSAID.
- To halt the trade of vulture parts and to stop poisoning by poaching activities.
The Vulture conservation programme :
- It is a part of the UNEP and every member country is expected to create a National vulture Task Force.
- Each of the member countries have to create the report of success of the project in 2029.
- The major threats leading to decline in vulture population are unintentional and intentional poisoning.
- Death due to power grid infrastructure (collision or electrocution).
- Reduction in food availability,
- Habitat loss (fragmentation and degradation),
- Disturbance from human activities and climate change.
Significance of Vultures:
- Vultures act as scavengers and play a crucial role in the environments in which they live.