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From Tehelka Magazine, Vol 6, Issue 16, Dated Apr 25, 2009
CULTURE & SOCIETY  
on the brink 13

Great Indian Bustard

Ardeotis nigriceps

BEST SEEN AT: Desert National Park, Rajasthan
STATUS:
Endangered/Schedule I*
GOOD TO KNOW:
Bustards rank amongst the heaviest flying birds

image THE BUSTARD WOULD have been our national bird, but for the wisdom of some babu who worried it might be misspelt as the Great Indian Bastard! Poor bird, doomed by its name, and otherwise as well. Once spread across western and southern India, the Great Indian Bustard (GIB) barely numbers 500 now. With the vanishing grasslands of India, this endemic bird has lost much of its original habitat and has disappeared from 95 percent of its range today. The other threat, is of course hunting — GIBs have been hunted indiscriminately over the years as they’re good table birds. Besides, they’re a difficult quarry, making for ‘good sport.’ They are slow breeders, laying one egg at a time, hence nesting failures can extinguish a population. Bustards woo their mates in style: adult males stand on a hillock or other conspicuous places to show off by puffing their chest and bugling for hours. But how long will this ritual last? To save the bustard, we must conserve its grassland habitat. Project Bustard along the lines of Project Tiger is called for.

PRERNA SINGH BINDRA

From Tehelka Magazine, Vol 6, Issue 16, Dated Apr 25, 2009


Extinction 52:
Jerdonís Courser
BEST SEEN AT: Sri Lankamalleswara Wildlife Sanctuary, Andhra Pradesh

Extinction 51:
Tibetan Antelope (Chiru)
BEST SEEN AT: Chang Chenmo Valley, Ladakh

Extinction 50:
Green Avadavat (Munia)
BEST SEEN AT: Mount Abu, Rajasthan

Extinction 49:
Bengal Florican
BEST SEEN AT: Dudhwa Tiger Reserve, Uttar Pradesh, Manas Tiger Reserve, Assam

Extinction 48:
Blackbuck
BEST SEEN AT: Velavadar National Park, Point Calimere, Tamil Nadu

Extinction 47:
Tiger
BEST SEEN AT: Ranthambhor, Rajasthan; Bandhavgarh, Madhya Pradesh

Extinction 46:
White-Winged Wood Duck
BEST SEEN AT: Pakhui-Nameri Tiger Reserve, Arunachal Padesh-Assam

Extinction 45:
Gharial
BEST SEEN AT: Katarniaghat Wildlife Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh

Extinction 44:
Indian Pangolin
BEST SEEN AT: Gir National Park, Ranthambhore

Extinction 43:
Sloth Bear
BEST SEEN AT: Daroji Bear Sanctuary, Karnataka

Extinction 42:
Olive Ridley Turtle
BEST SEEN AT: Rushikulya Beach, Orissa

Extinction 41:
Red Panda
BEST SEEN AT: Sangalila Park, West Bengal

Extinction 40:
Sangai
BEST SEEN AT: Loktak Lake Keibul Lamjao National Park, Manipur

Extinction 39:
Smooth-Coated Otter
BEST SEEN AT: Kaziranga, Assam; Corbett, Uttarakhand; Periyar, Kerala

Extinction 38:
Pygmy Hog
BEST SEEN AT: Manas Tiger Reserve, Assam

Extinction 37:
Greater One-Horned Rhinoceros
BEST SEEN AT: Kaziranga Tiger Reserve, Assam

Extinction 36:
Purple Frog
BEST SEEN AT: The Sahyadri range in Tamil Nadu and Kerala

Extinction 35:
Western Tragopan
BEST SEEN AT: Dharanghati Sanctuary, Himachal Pradesh

Extinction 34:
Whale Shark
BEST SEEN AT: Off Veraval coast, Saurashtra

Extinction 33:
Grizzled Giant Squirrel
BEST SEEN AT: Chinnar wildlife Sanctuary, TN, Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary, Karnataka

Extinction 32:
Asiatic Wild Dog
BEST SEEN AT: Bhadra & Nagarhole, Karnataka; Kanha & Kuno, Madhya Pradesh

Extinction 31:
Great Pied Hornbill
BEST SEEN AT: Pakke Tiger Reserve, Arunachal Pradesh; Silent Valley, Kerala; Corbett, Uttarakhand

Extinction 30:
Honey Bee
BEST SEEN AT: Most forests or big trees in your garden. They are known to prefer mango trees

Extinction 29:
Slender Loris
BEST SEEN AT: Kalakkad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve, Tamil Nadu, Mhadei Sanctuary, Goa

Extinction 28:
Greater Adjutant
BEST SEEN AT: Guwahati

Extinction 27:
Snow Leopard
BEST SEEN AT: Hemis National Park, Ladakh

Extinction 26:
Hangul
BEST SEEN AT: Dachigam National Park

Extinction 25:
King Cobra
BEST SEEN AT: Agumbe, Karnataka (entire southern Western Ghats from Kanyakumari to Goa); Bhitarkanika, Orissa; the Andamans

Extinction 24:
Asiatic Wild Ass
BEST SEEN AT: Wild Ass Sanctuary, Little Rann, Gujarat

Extinction 23:
Arunachal Macaque
BEST SEEN AT: Tawang and West Kameng districts, Arunachal Pradesh

Extinction 22:
Rusty Spotted Cat
BEST SEEN AT: Gir National Park, Gujarat; Mundanthurai, Tamil Nadu

Extinction 21:
Sarus Crane
BEST SEEN AT: Ettawa-Mainpuri, Uttar Pradesh

Extinction 20:
Snow Orchid
BEST SEEN AT: Mahananda Sanctuary, North Bengal

Extinction 19:
Asiatic Lion
BEST SEEN AT: Gir National Park, Gujarat

Extinction 18:
Asiatic Elephant
BEST SEEN AT: Corbett National Park, Nagarhole National Park

Extinction 17:
Gangetic Dolphin
BEST SEEN AT: Vikramshila Sanctuary, Bihar; Garmukhteshwar, UP

Extinction 16:
Hoolock Gibbon
BEST SEEN AT: Namdapha Tiger Reserve, Arunachal Pradesh

Extinction 15:
Malabar Banded Peacock
BEST SEEN AT: Western Ghats, mainly from South Goa to North Kerala

Extinction 14:
Nilgiri Tahr
BEST SEEN AT: Eravikulam National Park

Extinction 13:
Great Indian Bustard
BEST SEEN AT: Desert National Park, Rajasthan

Extinction 12:
Kurinji
BEST SEEN AT: Eravikulum National Park, Kerala

Extinction 11:
Horse-Shoe Crab
BEST SEEN AT: Bhitarkanika National Park, Orissa; Sundarbans, West Bengal

Extinction 10:
Lion-Tailed Macaque
BEST SEEN AT: Silent Valley, Kerala, Indira Gandhi Sanctuary, Tamil Nadu

Extinction 09:
House Sparrow
BEST SEEN AT: In your garden

Extinction 08:
Leopard
BEST SEEN AT: Gir National Park, Gujarat; Nagarhole National Park, Karnataka

Extinction 07:
Dugong
WHERE: Gulf of Munnar, Andamans

Extinction 06:
Medo Pit Viper
WHERE: North-eastern tip of Arunachal

Extinction 05:
Himalayan Yew
BEST SEEN AT: Nanda Devi National Park, Uttarakhand

Extinction 04:
Rameshwaram Parachute Spider
BEST SEEN AT: Rameshwaram

Extinction 03:
Coral Reefs
BEST SEEN AT: Lakshadweep Islands, Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Extinction 02:
The Forest Owlet
Best seen at: Withheld, tourism is a threat

Extinction 01:
Indian Wolf
Best seen at: Velvadar National Park, Gujarat


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