Apart From Wild Ass, 6 Species Show Rise In Numbers 

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Apart From Wild Ass, 6 Species Show Rise In Numbers 

| Updated: May 22, 2024 10:10

Wild ass census started on Tuesday; 25% increase in population expected

The wild ass census began on Tuesday and has recorded the presence of at least six other important species of animals in the area covered – hyenas, desert cats, desert foxes, wolves, Indian foxes and chinkaras.

According to officials carrying out the census, these were direct sightings, which indicate that conservation efforts are yielding results, and the populations of these species are also rising. 

From 6,082 in 2020, the wild ass population is expected to surpass 7,500, a 25% rise. This follows a notable 37% increase from 2015 to 2020.

The census will cover an area of about 17,000 sq km, including Sanand, Nalsarovar, and the principal habitat of the wild ass in the Little Rann of Kutch, said the sources. 

Six districts covered 

The census will cover six districts: Ahmedabad, Surendranagar, Morbi, Kutch, Patan and Banaskantha. Ahmedabad district was included in the census for the first time in 2020 after sightings of 19 wild asses around Nalsarovar. Foresters have reported regular sightings since then, establishing Sanand and Nalsarovar as confirmed habitats. 

In the 2020 wild ass census, five striped hyenas, 45 jackals, 19 Indian foxes, 37 desert foxes, two jungle cats and four desert cats were recorded. Sources said that, like the wild ass, these species will also report increased numbers. 

While drone technology was used in the 2020 census, this time the focus is on camera traps apart from drones. These advanced tools will help us understand the wild ass habitat comprehensively, according to sources.  

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