Handbook of Indian Crocodiles
|Author:||Madireddi V. Subba Rao|
|Publisher:||B.R. PUBLISHING CORPORATION|
|Pages:||104 (Throughout B/w Illustrations)|
The population of crocodiles has dwindled because of their exploitation at alarming rates. The commercially valuable skin, meat, eggs and oil made them vulnerable. Fear of spoiling the nets and vast consumption of fish, have made them enemies of fisherman. But with their protection under Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and special projects launched for their management and conservation enabled to protect them. Establishment of sanctuaries and special captive breeding centers at various places, their populations have now been restored in some places.
The book introduces the types of Indian crocodiles, their habits, biology, breeding, economic importance, status and distrubution, their management and conservation and steps taken for their protection throughout the World and are presented in different chapters.
He had published about 260 Technical and Scientific papers in Indian and international Journals. 33 Ph.D.'s and 12 M. Phil. Degrees were awarded under his able guidance to date. He had successfully completed 12 major research projects sanctioned by UGC, CSIR, World Bank and DOEn. He wrote 10 books. He is the Member, IUCN, SSC/Crocodile Specialist Group, Geneva and also Member in CBSG (IUCN). He is a Hon. Life member in Sea Turtle Preservation Society, Florida, USA.
In recognition of his achievements in contemporary research, National Environmental Science Academy, New Delhi awarded him a Best Scientist for the year 1986 and decorated him with Gold Medal and in 1991 the Andhra University recoginised the research talents of Prof. Rao and awarded him a Best Reseach Scientist and ISEAS, Bangalore with Gold Medal in 1997, American Biographical Research Inc., USA has nominated him as International Distinguised Leader in 1996, 1997. His name was placed in Asia's Who's Who, Man of Achievement, 1996, 1997, 2000. He was awarded gold medal for best Zoologist by ZSI in 2004 and by AZRA in 2009. He is a Peer committee member in NAAC.
Dr. Rao was working group member in Eastern and Western Ghats Research Projects, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Govt. of India, New Delhi and Member (Environment) in UGC, New Delhi. He is a Consultant for Environment Impact Assessment, NTPC, Vamsadhara, YRP, Visakhapatnam Port Trust, NFCL, GFCL, Spectrum, Kakinada Sea Ports Ltd.
Crocodiles, which occupied a unique place in the wildlife of India, had been slaughtered ruthlessly for their valuable skin and were made endangered and threatened. As per early records, crocodiles in the past roamed freely on the banks of the river Godavari. Realising the threat of extinction to crocodiles, crocodiles breeding and management schemes were started in India in 1975 with the help of FAO/UNDP. Now there are 16 crocodiles rearing centers in 8 states of the country. These timely efforts made this species to escape the threat of extinction.
For conservation and management of any species one should know its ecological aspects in detail.
This book is a narration of the Nature story, especially to the youth upon whose interests the future of many species, including crocodiles is dependent. I strongly hope that this book creates strong awareness among the public, especially in the youth, and helps strengthening the conservation movement. It is not intended as a treatise upon crocodiles. It aims rather an introducing crocodiles to non biologist and other nature lovers.
I take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks to my good friend and crocodile lover, Dr. H.R. Bustard, whom do I call "Father of Indian crocodiles" with whose encouragement and guidance I began to love and learn crocodiles.
My thanks are due to Orissa and Andhra Pradesh State Forest Departments, especially to the successive chiefs of wildlife and their field staff, whose unrelenting co-operation in the survey was highly valuable.
Crocodiles are known to us since the dawn of civilization and are described in several ancient Hindu mythologies. It was described that the river Goddess, Ganga used crocodile as her Vahana (the vehicle). The strength of a crocodile when it is in water was clearly described in "Gajendra Moksha", where in a white elephant 'Airavatha' was caught by a crocodile and was ultimately saved by Lord Vishnu.
In all, 25 species of crocodiles are present in the world, of which 3 species represent in India, viz., Gavialis gangeticus (Gharial), Crocodilus porosus (Saltwater crocodile), and Crocodilus palustris (Mugger crocodile). Crocodiles inhabit wide range of aquatic conditions. They are carnivores and also act as scavengers of the aquatic bodies by consuming the vulnerable and dead fish. They live in groups, feed and breed in water; and lay eggs on the banks. Crocodiles exhibit high degree of parental care, especially by saltwater crocodiles, the females of which protect the nests and the young ones.
The population of crocodiles has dwindled because of their exploitation at alarming rates. Their commercially valuable skin, meat, eggs and oil made them vulnerable. Fear of spoiling the nets and vast consumption of fish, have made them enemies of fishermen. But with their protection under Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and special projects launched for their management and conservation enabled to protect them. Establishment of sanctuaries and special captive breeding centers at various places, their populations have now been restored in some places.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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