This project was initiated by: Wildlife Trust of India (WTI)

Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) is a leading Indian nature conservation organisation committed to the service of nature. Its mission is to conserve wildlife and its habitat and to work for the welfare of individual wild animals, in partnership with communities and governments. WTI’s team of 150 dedicated professionals work towards achieving its vision of a secure natural heritage of India, in six priority landscapes, knit holistically together by nine key strategies or Big Ideas. Our vision is to secure natural heritage of India. Our mission is to conserve wildlife and its habitat and to work for the welfare of individual wild animals, in partnership with communities and governments.

Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) has been endorsed by:

Elephant Corridors


Project Summary

The Elephant Corridors program seeks to protect wild Asian Elephants and ensure their long term survival. WTI plans to restore connectivity between disconnected forested habitats, facilitating unhindered movement of elephants through this corridor.

Problem

The Western Ghats in southern India are among the identified 35 global biodiversity hotspots. However, the landscape includes vast areas of human habitation which have resulted in the degradation and fragmentation of forest habitats and increased incidences of Human Elephant Conflict. WTI has identified 19 elephant corridors in the larger landscape, including 13 in the Western Ghats-Nilgiri Plateau. The Periya at Pakranthalam Elephant Corridor presently passes through narrow and undulating forests between two villages. The corridor is situated on a hill road and the lower reaches of this corridor pass through fallow estate lands. The width of the corridor ranges between 0-300 metres and is in places critically narrow for the free movement of elephants between the two larger forested habitats. Further, the corridor area is impinged upon by a cellphone tower, fenced farmlands and plantations on private lands, further hindering the free movement of elephants. WTI is planning necessary action to restore elephant movement through this corridor.

Solution

WTI’s project aims to re-establish the natural habitat connectivity and increase the width of the Periya at Pakranthalam Elephant Corridor by securing 31.8 acres of private land currently preventing unhindered elephant movement. WTI will conterminously work towards getting the corridor area notified by the State Forest Department and legally protected under the appropriate laws to prevent further encroachment and developmental activities detrimental to animal movement. Close partnerships with the local communities in the form of outreach programmes, and providing advice and resources to reduce conflict are also vital. The benefit of the core strategy of land purchase, however, is that it provides a certainty to the habitat’s future and ensures that it will be protected in perpetuity. The following outcomes will indicate a successful corridor securement:
  1. Unhindered elephant movement between the two ranges of Periya Reserve Forest through land securement
  2. Usage of corridor areas by elephants and other wildlife, which will be monitored to assess the impact of land securement
  3. Legal protection of secured corridor land
  4. Villagers living on the fringe of the corridor sensitised about the criticality of the corridor area
  5. Local Community Based Organisations institutionalised as Green Corridor Champions (GCCs) to monitor and protect the corridor
  

Ask

We are seeking USD2,500,000 grant. The fund will be used for the following:
  1. Discussion and negotiation with stakeholders for their consent for purchase of private land in corridor
  2. Obtain permission from Forest Department for purchase of identified lands in corridor or providing alternate lands to stakeholders
  3. Purchase of identified corridor lands from landowners or providing them alternate land
  4. Power fencing of the corridor on the side to prevent animals from entering the corridor fringe villages
  5. Monitoring of the corridor areas to know usage by elephants
  6. MoU with Forest Department and handing over of the secured land to Forest Department for legal protection
  7. Awareness programmes with school children and local villagers and community support interventions, if required
  8. Training and Deploying community-based hand-holders in the form of Green Corridor Champions (GCCs) for corridor protection beyond the envisaged project period
 
 
 

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