UP's first Vulture Conservation Centre to come up near Gorakhpur
In a major step to check the dwindling population of vultures, the government is constructing a one of its kind, vulture conservation and breeding centre near Gorakhpur. It is scheduled to be inaugurated on September 3rd, which also marks International Vulture Awareness Day. To help augment the project, a budget of Rs. 1.06 crore has been allocated for the construction.
Increase tourism in Gorakhpur
The vulture conservation and breeding centre will likely pave a path for the development of Gorakhpur, and will especially help by increasing tourism.
The centre is being planned at Pharenda near Gorakhpur Forest Division, Uttar Pradesh. The government has signed a fifteen year agreement with the Bombay Natural History Society under which the land has been allotted.
Earlier in 2021, Rs 80 lakh was released for the Red-headed vulture conservation centre project. Now, with the new funding, the vulture conservation center is coming up in full swing.
Why is Asian vulture population declining?
According to an IUCN report, there are only 9,400 vultures left in the world. Conservation efforts include spreading awareness and setting up feeding areas so the vultures can get the nutrition they need. Of these, nine prominent vulture species can be found living in India, but most are now in danger of extinction.
In 2006, India banned the use of veterinary drug Diclofenac, which is toxic to any vulture that feeds on the carcass of recently treated cattle, but Asia’s Vultures from Extinction (SAVE) in its study, stated that the drug continues to be sold and used illegally today.
Vultures, which have a digestive system robust enough to even digest disease-causing pathogens found in rotting meat of dead, do not have a critical enzyme that breaks down diclofenac and die of renal failure after eating carcasses of cattle administered the drug.