Volume: 14 2019

  • Title : JOURNAL OF HIMALAYAN ECOLOGY AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT (INNER PAGES)
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  • Title : Hydrobiological Study of the Panner Water Reservoir, Tral Kashmir
    Author(s) : Humaira Farooq, Junaid Farooq, Sami UllahBhat*, Mohd Sharjeel Sofi, UmaraQayoom and Sheikh Tajamul Islam
    KeyWords : Reservoir, Phytoplankton, Zooplankton, Water quality index
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    This study being one of the very few on reservoir ecology from the region was crafted to have some insights regarding the ecology of manmade reservoir at Panner in Tral Kashmir. This reservoir was constructed during year 1969-70 to address the issue of water supplyin the area. We analysed the water chemistry and carried out plankton study from July-November 2018 at four sampling points within the reservoir.It was observed that the Water Quality Index (WQI) of the reservoir fall under excellent quality class (<50) with all sites having WQI ranging from 27.88 to 29.91 and meeting WHO standards for drinking purposes.One way ANOVA (Analysis of Variance) revealed significant variation (P<0.05) in total hardness (F=11.46, P=0.001), magnesium hardness (F=5.88, P=0.010) and total phosphorus (F=4.78, P=0.020).The phytoplankton community was represented by 25 genera belonging toBacillariophyceae(14), Chlorophyceae (08) and Cyanophyceae (3) while as zooplankton community was represented by 12 generabelonging to Cladocera(7), Rotifera(03) and Copepoda(2).Depth of reservoir was measured at various points and bathymetric map was generated using Arc GIS. On hydrobiological terms, the relationship between environmental variables and plankton density was determined by using Canonical Correspondence Analysis (CCA) which described the positive correlation of pH, temperature, nitrate and calcium content with planktonic density.Phytoplankton density followed the order: Bacillariophyceae>Chlorophyceae>Cyanophyceae while as Zooplankton density followed the order: Cladocera>Rotifera>Copepoda.

  • Title : Water Quality Assessment in Headwater of the Satluj Basin, Northwestern Himalaya, India
    Author(s) : Sheetal Chaudhary, Jagdish Chandra Kuniyal*, Nishant Vaidya, Sunil Puri
    KeyWords : Potable water, anthropogenic activities, Water quality index, River Satluj, Indian Himalaya
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    The present study was done to assess the suitability of river water for portability and other consumption purposes. Seven different physico-chemical parameters were taken into account to calculate Water Quality Index (WQI) based on recommended agency like Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and World Health Organization (WHO). The water analysis was done along the stretch of River Satluj (upper and middle basins) in Himachal Pradesh. SPSS version 20 was used for quantitative analysis in which regression analysis and ANOVA (analysis of variance) tests were used. Five category rating scale was used to classify each site and season. The study observed that all the selected sites were falling under good water quality (category ‘B’) except one Tapri (52.80) which had poor water quality (category ‘C’). Seasonally, pre-monsoon (50.27) and monsoon (53.76) seasons fall under ‘C’ category while postmonsoon (42.77) is under ‘B’ category. The Regression analysis and ANOVA shows the inter-relationship of different parameters. Significant differences (p< 0.05) for the seven water quality parameters were identified.The study concluded that River Satluj water is not fit for the drinking purposes without treatment and also proper monitoring and pollution control measures are needed for the improvement of the water quality.

  • Title : Use of High Resolution Remote Sensing for Improving Environmental Friendly Tourism Master Planning in the Alpine Himalaya: A Case Study of Sonamarg Tourist Resort, Kashmir
    Author(s) : Shakil Ahmad Romshoo* and Midhat Fayaz
    KeyWords : EIA, Master plan, Sonamarg, Remote sensing
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    The tourist influx to the world famous tourist resort of Sonamarg has increased over the years reaching 7,26,092 person in 2015 resulting in the increased demand for tourist infrastructure. However, the area is ecologically fragile and deserves high degree of caution before any developmental intervention is implemented at the resort. The paper provides a comprehensive and critical evaluation of the inadequacies and constraints of the Sonamarg Master Plan (SMP) prescriptions for the siting, need and suitability of the tourist infrastructure development as provided in the Plan. The study provides insights into use of high resolution remotely sensed data for evaluating the feasibility of the planned development in SMP. From the high resolution satellite data, it is evident that in 2015 itself Sonamarg has already crossed the level of the projected developmental activities set out under the Master Plan for 2025. Against the proposed built-up of ~60 ha for the infrastructure development by 2025, the area has witnessed the built-up infrastructure spread over ~58 ha area in the Sonamarg bowl in 2015. The analyses revealed that the proposed SMP needs a major review as it was found that it is beset with gross discrepancies. The investigations also revealed that the proposed infrastructure developments in the SMP are not in sync with the environmental stability and the SMP prescriptions, if allowed, don’t confer the ecological sustainability to the resort in the long-run.It is believed that the study would serve as a guiding framework for tourist planners and policy makers to preserve and safeguard the fragile ecosystems of the important tourist destinations in the Jammu and Kashmir.

  • Title : Geographical Analysis of Internal Migration and Livelihood Options for Mountain Sustainability along Indo-China Border in Niti Valley of Uttarakhand, Western Himalaya
    Author(s) : Sanjeev Sharma*, Kaushal Kumar Sharma and Shashank Patel
    KeyWords : Bhotia, livelihood, migration, Himalaya, transhumance, sustainability.
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    Bhotia tribe of the Niti valley were earlier dependent on trans-Himalayan trade, animal husbandry, seasonal agricultural activities and minor forest produce for their basic needs. Until the closure of the Indo-Tibetan border in 1962, they combined their agro-pastoral activities with trans-Himalayan trade. Although after formation of state of Uttarakhand in 2000, plain areas of the state has achieved higher economic growth but hilly regions along border areas have remained far behind, economically due to their geographical location. Villagers along the international Indo-Tibetan border in Niti valley of Uttarakhand are facing out-migration. Therefore, the present study is an attempt to examine geographical analysis of internal migration and livelihood options for mountain communities in Niti valley of Uttarakhand. The study is based on primary field survey, focused group discussions and participatory rural appraisal approach. The study revealed that majority of the locals are not residing in their native villages and only 7.90% of the total population and 8.10% of the total households were residing during field survey. Mostly elderly men, women and retired persons from government services are residing and pursuing agricultural activities in the village. The combined effects of harsh climatic conditions, difficult topography leading to limited food production, decreasing trade options due to closure of international border with Tibet, unstable economy, lack of alternative livelihood options, limited accessibility to basic infrastructure facilities such as school, communication networks, health facilities exposed local community to emigration. Further, study recommends measures and holistic strategies for the mountain sustainability in participation with local communities and other stakeholders to control out-migration and enhance livelihood options in the valley.

  • Title : Livestock Helminth Infestation as A Potential Threat To Wild Ungulates In HirporaWildlife Sanctuary
    Author(s) : Rouf Ahmad Bhat, Hidayatullah Tak, Bilal A.Bhat, Mustahson F. Fazili, Hameem Mushtaq Wani, Iqram ul Haq, and Riyaz Ahmad*
    KeyWords : Helminth parasites, prevalence, potential hosts, livestock, Hirpora
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    The gastrointestinal helminths are known to have high potential for transmission through feco-oral route and may transmit from livestock to wild ungulates with an impact on their health and reproduction. We lack studies on prevalence of gastrointestinal helminth parasites in domestic livestocksharing habitat with wild ungulates of Hirpora Wildlife Sanctuary. As the domestic sheep and goat constitute more than 90% of livestock population, we therefore, collected faecal samples of domestic sheep (n=281) and goat (n= 226) in the sanctuary from June to October of two consecutive years (2018 and 2019) for qualitative examination of gastrointestinal helminth parasites by centrifugal sedimentation and floatation methods.The present study reveals theprevalence of 77.22% and 72.12% of gastrointestinal helminth parasites in domestic sheep and goat respectively with an overall prevalence of 74.67%. A total of seven species of gastrointestinal helminth parasites were recorded which are arranged in the descending order of their overall prevalence as Haemonchus contortus (60.93%), Trichuris ovis (52.68%), Nematodirus sp. (40.82%),Trichostrongylus axei (39.89%),Moniezia expensa(34.96%), Strongyloides papillosus(33.63%)and Fasciola hepatica (31.51%).

  • Title : Toxicity of Biological and Chemical Insecticides on Spiders
    Author(s) : Vinod Kumari*, N P Singh, Shashi Meena and Rakesh Kumar Lata
    KeyWords : Spiders, Bacillus thuringiensis, Nuclear Polyhedrosis Virus (NPV), Imidacloprid, Chlorpyriphos, Cypermethrin, Monocrotophos
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    Spiders being voracious predators, acting as natural control of pests are facing the brunt of indiscriminate application of chemical pesticides. Therefore, objective of the present investigation is to analyze the toxicity of pesticides on predominant spider Pardosapsuedo annulata in laboratory and percent reduction of spider population due to pesticide in the field conditions. Among the five insecticides evaluated in laboratory, the insecticides from biological origin (biopesticides) i.e., Bacillus thuringiensis (16000 IU/mg) and Nuclear polyhedrosis virus (NPV) (1ˣ109 Polyhedral Inclusion Bodies, PIBs/ml) as compared to synthetic insecticides viz., imidacloprid (17.8% Soluble concentrates, SL), Chlorpyriphos (20% Emulsifiable concentrates, EC) and cypermethrin (10% EC) were relatively less harmful. NPV being species specific caused negligible mortality. Among synthetic insecticides, imidacloprid (17.8% SL) was more harmful as compared to Chorpyriphos (20% EC) and Cypermethrin (10% EC) causing 80.0, 16.5 and 4.8 percent, respectively. In field experiments, none of the insecticides was found safe to spiders when sprayed in green gram (Cicer arietinum, Variety RSG-44), pearl millet (Pennisetumglaucum, Variety Pioneer 86M86) and cabbage (Brassica oleracea L. var. capitata, Variety Golden Acre) crops. Both the first and second spray of insecticides viz., Chlorpyriphos (20% EC), Monocrotophos (36% SL) and Imidacloprid (17.8% SL) reduced the spider population significantly over control.

  • Title : Disarming Environment Impact Assessment: A critical review of theGovernment of India’s agenda to re-engineer environmentalclearance norms
    Author(s) : Mohd Sharjeel Sofi and Sami Ullah Bhat*
    KeyWords : Environmental Impact Assessment, Environmental clearance, Environmental governance
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    Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) process is deemed as one of the effective and vital policy innovations of the twentiethcentury for environmental protection. Presently EIA has emerged as a prescribed process and followedin more than hundred countries around the world. With India moving from the 144th rank in 2014 to 63rd in 2019 in Ease of Doing Business, this has led to weakening of environmental clearance provisions of the EIAprocess. This may lead to increase in foreign direct investment and industrial projects,but at the same time the potential economic gainsneeds to be reconciled with the precepts of environmental democracy which forms the core of EIA. In the backdrop of an overwhelming mandate, the present Indian government has brought several amendments to relax the norms for EIA process. It has become now visible and abundantlyclear that the priority of the government is to relax the norms thereby making the ways for some sort of compromise thereby diluting the letter and spirit of article 48 A and 51 A g in giving priority to environmental protection and issues thereof. The amendments run the risk of stifling public participation and catalysing damage to India’s natural resources and quality of environment.Deregulation by circumventingpublic participations will only enhance conflicts on the ground, impede industrial efficiency and augur imprudent environmental policies.The perceived anti-environment activities of the government such as diluting critical Environmental Impact assessment process to expedite rapid industrial development has a huge risk attached that can cause huge environmental governance crisis in the country, the impact of which will be felt in future in the form of irreversibleimpairment to ecology andhuge economic encumbrance on the people of India.

  • Title : Intelligence, Feeding Ecology and Scatter Hoarding Behaviour ofCorvids: A review
    Author(s) : Hameem Mushtaq Wani, Mustahson F. Fazili, Bilal A. Bhat* and Rouf Ahmad Bhat
    KeyWords : Corvids, Intelligence, Seed dispersal, Scatter-hoarding, Tools
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    The cosmopolitan bird family Corvidaecomprises of more than 120bird species including crows, ravens, rooks, jackdaws, jays, magpies, treepies, choughs and nutcrackers. They are medium to large size birds which are found worldwide except for the tip of South America and the polar ice caps. They do not migrate significantly and adjust their range-use to the availability of resources.Here, we present various behavioural studies to synthesize the literature regarding the intelligence and feeding ecology of corvids, their scatter hoarding behaviour and various steps involved in this behaviour. We also discuss, via examples, some ecosystem services provided by corvids. The innovation and creativity of corvids is describedvia their memorization abilities, feeding skills, group behaviour and use of tools (for example, bending of wires for foraging). To preventstealing of their caches, Corvids keep track of observing conspecifics, employ various caching and recaching approaches and exploit environmental agents to minimize their quantity of auditory and visual information available tothem (conspecifics). They infer mental state of their conspecifics via process driven simulation, accomplished by running of non-verbal and non-linguistic multimodal rules. They are omnivorous and their diet consists of various invertebrates, nestlings of other birds, small mammals, fruits, seeds and carrion.They areregarded as the key functional species for regeneration and maintenance of forests, through seed dispersal.Seed dispersal is accomplished by means of a unique “scatter-hoarding” behaviour.Because of their seed dispersal services, corvids could work as an important and efficient habitat restoration tool.