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IISc Bangalore to protect Indian giant squirrel

Pune, India: To work out a conservation plan for the Indian giant squirrel, the wildlife wing of Pune’s forest department has sought the help of Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. The institute will map out the habitat of the animal in Bhimashanker wildlife sanctuary, Pune, Maharashtra, India. The forest department has sought help to identify the threats to its livelihood and work out the shrinkage in the forest cover of the animal.

“We discussed the issue with a team of experts from IISc, asking them to provide the technical guidance for GIS map of the Bhimashanker wildlife sanctuary to identify the threats to the animal,” said M K Rao, conservator of forests wildlife.

“IISc experts will help our staff observe individual animals to raise the accuracy of our census figures which are arrived at through counting of nests. The IISc will train our field staff of labourers, guards and foresters in observing the individual animals. This will make our census figures more accurate,” added Rao.

Wildlife expert and former director of Wildlife Institute of India (WII), V B Sawarkar, added that while the mapping of the area will help, the details of the map should not be put out in public domain. “The animal is an endangered species and found only in Bhimashanker,” said Sawarkar.

Source: Indian Express