- Five Asian Rhino–range countries have signed the New Delhi Declaration on protection and conservation of Asian Rhino population:
- Three types of Asian Rhinos include
- Greater one-horned Rhino in India, Nepal and Bhutan
- Javan Rhino
- Sumatran Rhino
New Delhi Declaration: Rhino Conservation Strategy
- Trans-boundary collaboration between India, Nepal and Myanmar for Greater one-horned Rhino conservation in line with India’s National Rhino Conservation Strategy.
- Landscape-level conservation by connecting Sukla-Phanta (Nepal) and Valmiki tiger reserve (India) and Chitwan National Park (Nepal) and Dudhwa (India) to manage under the same protocol.
- Review of population of 3 Asian rhino species every four years.
- Strengthening the protection regimes with technology-based wildlife forensics.
- Real-time sharing of intelligence on rhino crime and its horn trade.
- Expansion of rhino habitat within and between rhino range countries for optimal population management.
- Connecting the rhino-corridors across international boundaries.
In-Brief: About Asian Rhinos
Greater one-horned Rhino (Indian Rhino)
- It is the largest of the rhino species.
- It has been accorded with ‘Vulnerable Status’ in the IUCN Red List.
- Indian Rhino is an amphibious species and an excellent swimmer.
- It is a herbivorous animal feeding on grasses, leaves, branches, fruit, and aquatic plants.
- Indian Rhino is a herbivorous species found in Tropical and Subtropical Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands.
- Indian Rhino population is restricted to Indo-Nepal terai region, northern West Bengal and Assam.
- The main sanctuaries of Indian Rhino are:
- Kaziranga National Park (70% of world’s population)
- Pobitara Wildlife sanctuary
- Orang National Park,
- Manas National Park Assam
- West Bengal
- Jaldapara National Park
- Garumara National Park
- Uttar Pradesh
- Dudhwa Tiger Reserve
- Royal Chitwan National Park
- Poaching due to demand in international trade for horn.
- Habitat destruction due to land-use change.
- Concentration of rhino population in one protected area, viz
- Political boundaries constricting natural boundary.
- Other threats including diseases and natural disaster.
- Indian Rhino Vision 2020 was launched in 2005 aimed at increasing the rhino population to 3000 by 2020.
- Translocation of species from Kaziranga to Manas.
- Training in new patrolling methods.
- Recently India launched the National Rhino Conservation Strategy 2019 calling for active engagement between India and Nepal.
- Now the Delhi Declaration for Asian Rhino conservation and protection
Sumatran and Javan Rhino
- Sumatran and Javan Rhinos have been accorded the ‘Critically Endangered’ Status under IUCN Red List.
- Javan Rhino are only about 60 in number concentrated in Unjung Kulon National Park near Jakarta in Javan island of Indonesia.
- Earlier they were found in Cat Tien National Park in Vietnam where it is extinct now.
- Sumatran Rhino are the smallest among Asian Rhinos.
- There are about 300 of this species left in Indonesia and Malaysia where it is extinct in the wild.
- They are only Asian Rhino species with 2 horns.
Section : Environment & Ecology