Indian state provides land for endangered bustard


The state government of Rajasthan in northern India has dedicated a large portion of the Desert National Park for the conservation of Great Indian Bustard.

The species is categorised as Critically Endangered by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). It was once found in 12 Indian states but has been lost from 90% of its range and it is thought only around 150 of the bustards survive in the wild.

Great Indian Bustard has been lost from much of its range but the land transfer offers new hope for the species (Nirav Parekh).

Management of 1,600 ha of land around four villages in Jaisalmer has been handed over to the Forest Department for wildlife conservation, with a focus of restoring the population of Great Indian Bustard.

Ashish Vyas, Forest Conservator of Desert National Park, said the announcement came after he sent a proposal to the state government for more resources for the conservation of the species, known locally as 'Godawan'.

Alongside the transfer of land management, more resources will be provided for the bustard captive breeding programme in Jaisalmer. A total of 14 chicks were raised at the facility in its first year in 2019.