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Covid pandemic severely affected Wild Life Tourism: CCF Punjab

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Kapurthala, October 04, 2020 (Yes Punjab News)

The World is fighting against an invisible opponent that has forced us all to push the ‘PAUSE’ button on our lives. This global pandemic has set off a ripple effect across the nations. This crisis has also had a deep impact on wildlife.

While the world has come to a complete and utter standstill, nature seems to be reclaiming her territory— wild animals near urban cityscapes are taking this opportunity to step beyond the comforts of their forested homes, global wildlife trade has been thrown into the spotlight and wildlife tourism too has felt the impact of this pandemic.

This was expressed by Sh. Basanta Rajkumar, IFS, Chief Conservator of Forests, Punjab at the occasion of webinar on Impact of Corona Pandemic on Wildlife organized by Pushpa Gujral Science City Kapurthala.

An e-book titled “The Lost Species” portraying extinct animals & plants was released at this occasion which has been jointly published by PGSC and Department of Forests and Wild Life Preservation to mark the celebration of World Wildlife Week 2020.

Further, all around the world, there have been reported incidents of animals venturing into cities as people have started confining themselves to the safety of their homes in an effort to control the spread of Coronavirus.

This global pause has given us a chance to rethink our relationship with nature. We must learn to co-exist if we want to sustain our urban ecology. Quarantine is affecting wildlife in unexpected ways. In countries like India, monkeys and several other wildlife species are very much adapted to urban environments and are heavily dependent on human generated food waste to survive, he added.

Speaking at this occasion, Director General Science City, Dr. Neelima Jerath said that human actions including deforestation, encroachment on wildlife habitats, intensified agriculture, and acceleration of climate change have pushed nature beyond its limit.

Further, one million species of flora and fauna have already become extinct due to deforestation and 50000 species are being lost annually that is creating imbalance in our eco-system. If we continue on this path, wild life loss will have severe implications on humanity, including the collapse of food and health systems.

The emergence of COVID-19 has underscored the fact that, when we destroy forests, we destroy the system that supports human life. Nature is sending us a message which we need to decode and take collective action. This occasion is meant to educate and make people aware about the need of planting trees, as trees are one the best solution to control the global warming and preserve wild life.

Present at this occasion, Director Science City, Dr. Rajesh Grover said that Wildlife Week in India celebrated during the first week of October focuses on the importance of wildlife preservation for a balanced and healthy environment. Its ultimate objective is to sensitize people, appreciate our wildlife and work towards its conservation.

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