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ZSI to record climate change impact on animals in Himalayas

Press Trust of India  |  Kolkata 

Zoological Survey of India has started five long-term monitoring plots in the Himalayas to document the impact of climate change on animal world.

The project, funded by the Ministry for environment, forest and climate change, will monitor indicators in species like fish, butterflies, bees and other insects to find how their distribution has been affected by climate change, officials said.

ZSI director Kailash Chandra said it has very old records and will compare the distribution of species in the past and present to come out with a study report on the impact of climate change on their survival.

The project will run for three years in West Bengal, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh and more than Rs 2 crore has been earmarked for the exercise.

Last year, 262 new animal species were discovered from India out of which 70 have been credited to ZSI scientists.

Chandra said the number of scientists working in ZSI has decreased over the years. He said only 80 scientists were working with the organisation now as compared to 120-130 in the past.

This has also resulted in the decline of reporting of new species. An average of over 100 new species was recorded by ZSI scientists in the past which has now come down, he said.

India is home to 94,515 species from the animal kingdom as on 31 December 2015.

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First Published: Tue, June 28 2016. 19:13 IST
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