Barda gets ESZ cover, no lions yet
The Times Of India
AHMEDABAD: An Eco-sensitive zone (ESZ), 500 metres to 5.6 km away from the boundaries of the Barda Wildlife Sanctuary and covering 23 villages, has been earmarked by the Union ministry for forest and environment. With this, restrictions on mining, setting up of industries and other activities that may adversely affect the wildlife in the region have come into force.
The sanctuary straddling the border of Porbandar and Jamnagar districts, which was created in 1979 when Chandraprabha (Uttar Pradesh) experiment of lion translocation failed, is, however, yet to host any lion even after 36 years.
While demarcating the ESZ, the Union government has mentioned that Barda Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the richest and compact biodiversity patches covered on all sides by good quality dry deciduous miscellaneous forests, dry thorn forest, shrub lands and wetland forests along with bamboo patches dotted in between and it maintains rich biodiversity comprising 759 species of trees, herbs, shrubs and climbers, 22 mammal species, which include some rare species, 26 species of reptiles, four species of amphibians, 55 species of butterfly, more than 3,000 species of insects, and more than 269 species of birds.
Besides Barda, another sanctuary that is waiting to hear the roars of lions is Kuno-Palpur. A 12-member committee has been formed to oversee translocation of Gir lions to Kuno-Palpur sanctuary in Madhya Pradesh in the light of an April 2013 order of the Supreme Court.