The Crocodile Project is a conservation initiative launched by the Government of India to protect and conserve the endangered saltwater crocodile species in the country. It was initiated in the 1970s to reverse the declining population of saltwater crocodiles due to habitat loss, poaching, and hunting.
Here are some important points about the Crocodile Project that you can consider for UPSC exam preparation:
- Objectives: The primary objective of the Crocodile Project is to conserve the saltwater crocodile population in the country and their habitat.
- Implementation: The project is implemented by the Central Government’s Ministry of Environment, Forests, and Climate Change, in collaboration with state governments, NGOs, and local communities.
- Activities: The project includes various activities, such as habitat conservation, breeding and rearing of crocodiles, research and monitoring, education and awareness, and eco-tourism development.
- Crocodile sanctuaries: As part of the project, several crocodile sanctuaries have been established in different parts of the country, including Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary, Sundarbans National Park, and the Mahanadi Wildlife Sanctuary.
- Breeding and rearing: The project focuses on breeding and rearing crocodiles in captivity and releasing them into the wild to increase the population.
- Research and monitoring: The project supports research and monitoring of crocodile populations, their behaviour, and their habitat to inform conservation efforts.
- Education and awareness: The project aims to educate and create awareness among local communities about the importance of conserving crocodiles and their habitat.
- Eco-tourism development: The project supports eco-tourism development in crocodile sanctuaries to generate income for local communities and promote conservation efforts.
- Successes: The Crocodile Project has successfully increased the population of saltwater crocodiles in the country from around 200 in the 1970s to over 4,000 in 2019.
- Challenges: Despite the project’s success, crocodiles still face threats from habitat loss, poaching, and hunting.
The Crocodile Project is an important conservation initiative in India aimed at protecting and conserving the endangered saltwater crocodile population in the country. Understanding its objectives, implementation, and activities is essential for aspirants preparing for the UPSC exam.