Sei sulla pagina 1di 90

ZOO/WILD ANIMAL BREEDING, NUTRITION, MANAGEMENT AND HEALTH CARE

VMD-512

BREEDING, NUTRITION, MANAGEMENT AND HEALTH CARE VMD-512 VMD-512 TANUVAS Notes Compiled by Dr. Pradeep Kumar Sharma
BREEDING, NUTRITION, MANAGEMENT AND HEALTH CARE VMD-512 VMD-512 TANUVAS Notes Compiled by Dr. Pradeep Kumar Sharma
BREEDING, NUTRITION, MANAGEMENT AND HEALTH CARE VMD-512 VMD-512 TANUVAS Notes Compiled by Dr. Pradeep Kumar Sharma
BREEDING, NUTRITION, MANAGEMENT AND HEALTH CARE VMD-512 VMD-512 TANUVAS Notes Compiled by Dr. Pradeep Kumar Sharma
BREEDING, NUTRITION, MANAGEMENT AND HEALTH CARE VMD-512 VMD-512 TANUVAS Notes Compiled by Dr. Pradeep Kumar Sharma

MODULE-1 : INTRODUCTION TO WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT

Learning objective

This unit is mainly to mean the veterinary students on the wildlife management and the concepts.

The objectives of this module are

o

To understand wildlife management

o

To know about the protected regions like wildlife sanctuary, national park etc

o

To come across the terms like eco system, eco development etc.

o

To reveal information on pheromone, animal indicator and biomes

WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT

This is the art and science of changing the characteristics and interactions of habitats, wild animal populations and homosapiens.

Wildlife management is oriented to achieve the specific human goals by means of wildlife resource.

BASICS OF WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT

Observation

Hypothesis

Texts of hypothesis

Interpretation of results

Conclusion

Reporting of results

WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT TRAID

This is the one that is associated with population of wild animals, interaction with human beings and habitat.

This triad often involves complex factors that need scientific type of intervention in a sustainable manner.

Human interests are safe guarded but without affecting the eco-systems and wildlife in reality.

ASSOCIATED FACTORS WITH WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT

Ecological perspectives.

Execution of programmes to maintain previous successes.

Ability to prevent repetition of past failures.

Knowledge on scientific research and applications.

Successful articulations with different research agencies.

Scholarly application of scientific information and methods.

CONSERVATION

This is the management of human use of biosphere with an ultimate aim of yielding the greatest sustainable benefits to the present generation, while maintaining the potential to encounter the requirements and expectations of the future generation.

In nutshell, it can be said as the one that ensures continued survival by saving the wild animals from extinction and thereby protecting the habitats.

Conservation is different from preservation because it always aims the sustainable usage of the available resources in the environment.

INTERNATIONAL CONVENTIONS

United Nations Conference on the human environment in 1972

World Heritage Convention in 1972

Ramsar Convention in 1971

Migratory species Convention in 1979

World Conservation Strategy in 1980

United Nations Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in the Transboundary Context in 1991.

ECO-SYSTEM

This is a mosaic of habitat patches. There is a special relationship between the different ecosystems existing in the wildlife regions. There are movements of organisms between different patches in the revolving world.

It is to be understood that the movements in general occur among the wildlife species or organisms due to many reasons.

o

Movements for establishment of territories

o

Search for feed resources

o

Movement due to water scarcity

o

Movements due to the extreme climatic variations

o

Search for proper shelter

o

Dispersal from areas with high population concentrations to less densely populated regions

o

Pressure from hunting or frequent predator attack

o

Movements due to hazards (acoustic injuries to dolphins, whales and dugongs)

o

Other reasons that are still to be clarified.

THREATS TO ECO-SYSTEMS

These have to be identified and sorted out with a proper understanding of multiple factors involved for this.

Followings are the examples for the identified threats in a wildlife region:

o

Alteration of major mineral or organic constituents of a system

o

Removal of plantations or vegetations

o

Prevention of naturally occurring events that disturb the cycles

o

Introduction of pest species like goats

o

Application of hazardous chemicals like pesticides or herbicides

o

Changes in the major mineral or organic components of a system

o

Elimination of key-wild animal species like top predator (tiger)

ECO DEVELOPMENT

This may be defined as the set of conservation oriented development measures to make protected areas and the human neighbours compatible with each other.

This is a process of developing the conservation of natural resources that are sustainable by associating local persons in the development and implementation of rural development programmes.

AIMS OF ECO-DEVELOPMENT MEASURES

To reduce the dependency of people (or neighbours of forests in particular) for the resources from the forests.

People use the resources of forests for the following purposes in general:

o

Fuel.

o

Grazing of livestock.

o

Fodder.

o

Building of houses.

o

Agricultural practices and implements.

o

Forest products.

o

Food purposes.

NATURAL RESERVES

Various natural reserves existing in the wildlife regions provide the complete protection for the wild animals belonging to the different species.

Many times, human interventions are made for positive purposes in order to give more protection to the wild fauna and flora. It is to be understood that various natural reserves hardly comprise one percent of the earth‟s land areas.

Most of the other areas are used for production of food, timber, pulpwood or other raw materials. Hence, in all these areas, wildlife conservation related measures need to be strengthened and if necessary, human intervention (Broader land use strategy) may be made in order to enrich the protective measures for the welfare of wild fauna and flora.

BIOMES AND ECOLOGICAL EQUIVALENTS

Major global units of flora and fauna are termed as biomes.

With regard to the ecological equivalents, the wild animals in one region may differ from their taxonomic classification but taps particular environmental resources within the ecosystem.

SANCTUARY

An area can be declared as a sanctuary through notification under the section 18 of the Wildlife (Protection) Act of 1972 and the process of determination of peoples rights and their acquisition / elimination under sections 19-25 follows such a declaration.

Sanctuary can be defined in nut shell as a larger area meant for the protection of wild fauna and flora. Sanctuaries have sound legal status with a strong but not exclusive wildlife oriented management.

The grazing activities are restricted and subordinated to the needs of wildlife conservation. Moderate amounts of fund provision and staff facilities are given when compared to the national park.

Tourism may exist to some extent but it is a restricted area. The status of a wildlife sanctuary can always be elevated to that of a national park.

NATIONAL PARK

National park is an area that has more legal status in general. A wildlife sanctuary may be elevated to the status of national park in the course of time, depending on the extent of additional protection, the value of the concerned wild animal species etc.

National park has a sound legal status. They are developed exclusively for the purpose of conservation of wildlife in their natural environment. Drastic manipulation of the wildlife habitat is not favored in general.

The approach towards the management related to the national park is basically of compensatory and reamelioratory nature.

FACTORS CAUSING IMPACT ON PROTECTED REGIONS

Wildlife regions get affected due to multiple factors that are made for various reasons.

In this regard, it is to be noted that planning and management of various wildlife sanctuaries and national parks together with other conservation units get affected by various developmental activities like building of roads, dams, transportation of minerals or mining related works, transportation of natural gas or oil and other exploitation related measures made for various purposes.

PHEROMONES

Pheromones are the scent materials by which the wild animals of different species in the forest communicate with each other and are often used to attract the opposite sex. Pheromones are also used to indicate the occupation of a territory to the conspecifics (animals of the same species).

Examples

Hyaenas have scent glands in anal region

Felids have scent glands and their markings leave a musky odor that can be perceived by human nose for almost three weeks and the marking is done mainly along with the urination.

Wild sheep or goat species may have such type of glands in between the two main toes of the feet.

In cervids and antelopes in general, scent glands are present below the eye.

ANIMAL INDICATORS

Animals are being used to indicate the health status of themselves, the environment etc. The complexity of factors like nutritional, ethological, environmental, genetic etc. act in general upon a population of wild animals.

These factors are assessed by secondary indicators like habitat, feeding habits, population characteristics. Assessment of primary indicators that are obtained directly from wild animals representing a population may help in minimizing many sources of variations and provide greater precision, in general.

During the planning of wildlife management, more significance is generally given to the various types of wildlife values.

ZOOLOGICAL MEDICINE

In general, medicine is defined as any means to cure disease or improve health and health is broadly defined as the general condition of body and mind. Zoological Medicine is a wide spectrum of disciplines associated with the medical problems of all species of wild animals in a captive wild animal place.

Types of Medicine in wildlife fields

o

Zoo medicine - It is associated with captive wild animals.

o

Wildlife medicine - It is the one that is associated with free living wild animals.

o

Population medicine - It is the one that is associated with large number of wild animals.

MODULE-2 : TAXONOMY-I

This chapter is mainly related to the various taxonomical classification of wild animals. So, you can finally know the various species of different taxonomical divisions in this unit.

The objectives are

To come across the baseline classification of wild animals

To know taxonomical units like pholidota, primates, proboscidea, lagomorpha, dermoptera, chiroptera, insectivore, hyracoidean and tubelidentata

TAXONOMY

The taxonomy in wild mammals consists of many orders and families. The binomial nomenclature of the Swedish naturalist Carolus Linnaeus is followed in the animal kingdom. Genus name is followed by species name in general. Ecological isolation is given significance when it becomes necessary.

Example

Panthera tigris altaica (it denotes the Siberian tiger which is much larger, heavier and with a thicker.

Panthera tigris corbetti (it indicates the tiger that is smaller in size than the Royal Bengal tiger.

BROADER CLASSIFICATION

BROADER CLASSIFICATION VERTEBRATES AND NON-VERTEBRATES

VERTEBRATES AND NON-VERTEBRATES

BROADER CLASSIFICATION VERTEBRATES AND NON-VERTEBRATES

In this vertebrates earlier had dorsal vertebral column that arises as a rigid rod called notochord and was later replaced by a segmented and cartilaginous rod called as the vertebral column.

ANOTHER CLASSIFICATION

Protozoa and Metazoa

Protozoa

o These animals are unicellular ones (body is not sub-divided into cells). Example: Ameba and Euglena.

Metazoa

o This comprises the cellular animals.

PHYLA IN MAMMALIAN TAXONOMY

In general, there are many phyla available in the taxonomical classification of animals. Example: Phylum Annelida contains the animals like leeches and tape worm that have a segmented body and Phylum Arthropoda comprises the animals like crab, lobster, spider, scorpion and insects. These are the bilaterally symmetrical ones with segmented body that is coverd by a chtinous exoskeleton .

Among the different phyla, it is the phylum chordata that is considered as more significant one.

TYPICAL ATTRIBUTES OF CHORDATES

Basic features of chordates

Notochord (this is the elsastic skeletal rod below the nerve cord and above the alimentary canal and may be replaced partially or completely by vertebral column.

Dorsal tubular nerve cord (this is a hollow tubular nerve cord that is filled with fluid above the notochord and is present in most of the vertebrates but in a few it degenerates before the maturity)

Gill clefts (these are the paired openings communicating to the exterior from the pharynx. In higher chordates, they usually form the endocrine glands.

Note

In chordates, the notochord or vertebral column is present in all but the other two features may completely disappear at maturity stage in most cases.

CHARECTERISTICS OF HIGHER CHORDATES

Presence of a ventrally located heart

Presence of a hepatic portal system

RBCs are present in most of the chordates

Post anal tail is present that may get modified or reduced in adult stages.

CLASSIFICATION OF PHYLUM CHORDATA

Phylum Chordata has two significant groups as follows

Group: Acraniata (Protochordata): This contains the chordates that are lacking the brain box or cranium, jaws and brain. Eg. Primitive fish like mammals

Group: Craniata (Vertebrates): This contains ten classes. Mammalia is one of the ten classes in this group.

FEATURES OF CLASS MAMMALIA

The class mammalia has three basic features

Skin has hair materials except cetacea

These are warm blooded animals

They suckle their young ones

Other features

o

Females have mammary glands

o

External ear lobes are present

o

No. of teeth are fixed in mammals and species specific

o

Diphyodont dentition is present in mammals

o

Muscular diaphragm separating the thoracic and abdominal cavities is present

o

Mammals are viviparous except the monotremes

o

Heart has four chambers

o

Males have penis

o

Locomotion is of three types (Plantigrade locomotion, digitigrades locomotion and unguligrade locomotion) due to variable limb structures

o

Skull is provided with two occipital condyles ((dicondylic)

CLASSIFICATION OF MAMMALIA

There are two sub-classes under the class Mammalia

o

Prototheria

o

Theria

PROTOTHERIA

This comprises the single order called Monotremata that has following features:

Testes are abdominal and cloaca is present.

Mammary glands are present without nipples.

They lack external ear.

Examples

Spiny anteater/Echidna and Duck billed platypus

THERIA

Marsupials and placental mammals fall in this category.

Major 4 characteristics of this sub-class are:

o

o

o

o

Presence of external pinna

Absence of cloaca

Presence of nipples in the mammary glands

Females are viviparous in nature.

INFRACLASSES OF THERIA - ASSOCIATED FACTORS

Infraclass I

Metatheria

o

o

This group consists of a single order Marsupilia .

Marsupials are the animals with a brood pouch or marsupium in the females in which the new born is taken care of well. Examples: Kangaroo, tiger cat, opossum and the like.

Infraclass II

Eutheria

o These animals lack marsupium and cloaca. This group comprises all other mammals that are again divided into many orders. (Edentata, Pholidota, Primates, Proboscidea, Lagomorpha, Dermoptera, Chiroptera, Insectivora, Rodentia, Hyracoidea, Tubelidentata, Artiodactyla, Perissodactyla, Carnivora, Cetacea and Sirenia)

EDENTATA

This group comprises three families:

o

Dasypodidae (eg. Armadillos)

o

Bradypodidae (eg. Sloths)

o

Myrmecophagidae (eg. Anteaters like Giant anteater (Myrmecophaga tridactyla).

Common features

o

Long snout is present

o

Teeth may be lacking in some and if at all present, incisors and canines may be invariably absent.

o

Well developed claws are present in the feet.

o

Testicles are abdominal in nature.

Among these animals, it is the sloth that is strictly arboreal and moves by a slow hand-over-hand-motion as they hang upside down below the tree branches and can climb or descend a vertical pole with ease but are unable to move with ease on the ground.

Armadillos are the powerful diggers and live in the underground burrows when they are not active. These animals also roll like balls when any attempts to kill or catch.

Long teeth with long tongue that is sticky with saliva are the features in the anteater and there are no teeth in this species.

PHOLIDOTA

This order comprises nocturnal animals and Pangolins or Scaly anteaters of the old world belong to this order with only one genus, Manis. Common features

Body is covered with large overlapping plates (hence, the name Scaly anteater)

Long snout

Long tongue

Absence of teeth

Examples

Indian Pangolin (Manis crassicaudata)

Chinese Pangolin (Manis pentadactyla)

PRIMATES

Primates are generally arboreal in nature with plantigrade movements. Both the hands and foot are prehensile.

There are approximately 191 species of primates.

Classification of primates

There are two sub-orders:

o

Prosimii (prosimians)

Animals like lemurs, lorises, bush babies, tree shrews and tarsiers belong to this suborder.

o

Anthropoidea (monkeys and apes)

Families of primates

Cebidae (new world monkeys)

Callithricidae (marmosets and tamarins)

Cercopithecidae (old world monkeys)

Hylobatidae (gibbons)

Family Pongidae (apes)

Hominidae(man)

APES

Both in apes and monkeys, the cerebral hemisphere is well developed. These animals are diurnal in nature.

Gorilla is the largest primate and grows to a height of up to 1.8 meters and has a body weight of about 200 kg. In India, there are no greater apes.

They differ from monkeys in following features:

o

Absence of tail

o

Usage of their arms to swing through the trees

GREAT APES

This group comprises chimpanzee, gorilla and orang-utan.

Animal

Location

Orang-utan

Forests of Sumatra and Borneo

Chimpanzee

This is a native to equatorial Africa

Gorilla

Low land areas of West Africa and Cameroon and the mountain variety is in Eastern Congo basin

LESSER APES

The Gibbon present in India is the example for this animal group. The only gibbon present in India is Hoolock gibbon (Hylobates hoolock). These are found in forests of Assam state and Chittagong.

They stand erect like man and walks erect many times, with stretched hands as balancing organs. These are also called as the white browed gibbons.

LORISES

There are two types of

lorises

in India

 

o

Slender loris (Loris tardigradus)

 
 

These animals are present in south India.

 
 

o

Slow loris (

Nycticebus coucang

)

 
 

These animals are present in northeastern parts of India.

 

These lorises in general have large sized eyes. Hence, they are some times hunted and products from them

are associated with the belief on improvement of eyesight.

 
MACAQUES  Bonnet macaque ( Macaca radiate): Present in south India  Rhesus macaque (

MACAQUES

Bonnet macaque (Macaca radiate): Present in south India

Rhesus macaque (Macaca mulatta): Present in north India

Lion tailed macaque (Macaca silenus): Present in Tamilnadu, Kerala and Karnataka.

Assamese macaque (Macaca assamensis)

Pig tailed macaque (Macaca nemestrina)

Stump tailed macaque (Macaca speciosa)

LANGURS

Common langur (Semnopithecus entellus; old name Presbytis entellus)

Present in whole India except the western deserts

Nilgiri langur (Trachypithecus johni)

 

Present in Western ghats regions

Golden langur (Trachipithecus geei; old name is Presbytis geei)

Present in Assam

Leaf

monkey

or

capped

langur

(Trachypithecus

 

pileatus; old name is Presbytis pileatus)

PROBOSCIDEA

There are two genera in the single living family elephantidae of order Proboscidea:

o

African elephant (Loxodonta Africana)

There are two sub-species in the African elephants :

Smaller forest elephant and the larger bush or savannah elephant

o

Asiatic elephant (Elephas maximus)

There are four sub-species in the Asiatic elephants:

Indian, Ceylon, Sumatran and Malaysian.

AFRICAN AND ASIATIC ELEPHANTS

In terms of weight, height, trunk-structures, nail-numbers, occurrence of musth related features, differences are seen in general between the African and Asiatic elephants.

In India, the elephants are seen in western ghat regions that includes Tamilnadu, Kerala and Karnataka in addition to Uttar Pradesh, Orissa, West Bengal and Assam. Makhnas are also seen in elephant herds

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ASIATIC AND AFRICAN ELEPHANTS

Details

African elephants

Asiatic elephants

Size

Larger

Smaller

Bull-weight in

4100-5000

3700-4500

Kg

Cow-weight in

2300-4000

2300-3700

Kg

Height at shoulder in mt (Bull)

2.7-3.2

2.4-2.9

Height at shoulder in mt (Cow)

2.3-2.7

2.1-2.4

Ears

Larger

Comparatively smaller

Highest point

At the shoulder

At the middle of the back

Trunk

Small

Large

Surface of trunk

Transverse ridges and grooves on the trunk

More or less uniform

Tip of trunk

Two finger like processes at the tip of the trunk

Only one finger like process

Tusks

Present in both sexes and are larger

Present in males only and are smaller comparatively. Some times, smaller ones called tushes may be present.

Dip

Marked dip is present on the back between fore and hind quarters

Back has unbroken convex curve

Face

Elongated and narrow face with flat fore head

Face is with twin domed fore head

Nails in fore limb

Four nails in each fore feet

Five nails each on fore feet and some times, four each.

Nails in hind limb

Four nails in each hind feet

Four nails each on hind feet; sometimes five each

Skin

Coarser and lacks the depigmentation areas

Smooth with white or pinkish depigmented areas

Temporal gland

Present in both males and females

Present in males only.

secretion

Intelligence

Less intelligent and is difficult to domesticate

More intelligent and is easy to domesticate

LAGOMORPHA

This group comprises small to moderate sized animals like rabbit, hare and pikas.

Long soft fur, long ears, short tails, fully furred feet, slit like nostrils are the characteristic features in these species.

Mongooses, jackals, foxes, wild dogs and wild cats are the enemies for this species.

The lagomorphs have long hind limbs used for jumping.

FAMILIES

Leporidae consists of rabbit and hare

Ochotonide consists of mouse-hare

The significant animals in this group are given below

o

Indian hare (Lepus nigricollis) is present in most parts of India.

o

Blacknaped hare (sighted in areas from south India to the Godavari on the east and west as well as MP)

o

Rufoustailed hare (seen in Himalayas southwards to Godavari)

o

Desert hare (seen in Rajasthan, Cutch, Kathiawar, Sind, south-west Punjab)

o

Cape hare (sighted in Kashmir)

o

Woolly hare (seen in Sikkim and Ladak)

o

Himalayan mouse hare (Ochotona royle)

DERMOPTERA

They are commonly called as the flying or gliding lemur which is also called as the Colugo. These animals are restricted to south-east Asia and Philippines. This species is considered as a taxonomic puzzle because it has the head that reveals the features of both the lemurs and insectivores.

CHIROPTERA

Nearly a quarter of the living mammals belong to the group of bats. This order has about 951 species of bats.

They are mostly nocturnal in habits with very small eyes coupled with poor vision.

These are the only mammals that are capable of maintaining a sustained flight. Echolocation is the technique being used by bats to locate the prey species.

However, the fruit bats may have a well developed eyes and echolocation is poor in them.

SUB ORDERS

Microchiroptera

Small insectivorous bats are grouped in this category. These mammals are the gregarious in nature. In day time, they are seen hanging in tree branches or crevices with their head down. They live on night-flying insects.

Example : Desmodus and Rhindophus

Macrochiroptera

This order contains large sized bats like fruit bats or fruit eating bats that are commonly called as the flying foxes. They don‟t have any tail but have an elongated snout. They also live in groups and are seen hanging upside down in tall trees often. During the hanging, the wings are tucked up in the folded condition. They are also nocturnal and gregarious in nature

INSECTIVORA

This has 8 families, 70 genera and approximately 400 species of small mammals.

The distribution of these insectivores including location and specialities is a wide one in general.

Family

Species

Location

Solenodons

2

Antilles

Tenrecs

20

Madagascar

African water shrews

3

Africa

Golden moles

20

Africa

Hedgehogs

15

Old world

Elephant shrews

18

Africa

True shrews

314

Worldwide

True moles

20

Northern hemisphere

CHARACTERISTICS

In the insectivores, the hedgehogs and tenrecs have more spines on skin and the spiny nature helps them to roll like balls when the predators attempt to attack them. Such anatomical variants vary from species to species.

For example, elephant shrews have extremely long mobile noses and long legs. Armored shrews have a unique spinal column with extensive ramification of long processes that have multiple interlaces. Similarly, the star-nosed mole (Condylura cristata) has 22 radiating fleshy thin appendages around the muzzle which are the tactile organs.

Moles have paddle like forefeet with enhanced musculature for digging rapidly. Webbed feet with laterally flattened tails are present in few aquatic forms of insectivores.

RODENTIA

This order is the largest order of mammals. Among the rodents, the largest living rodent is the capybara (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris) and may have a body weight of even 50 kg. Rodents have no second incisors, canines or front premolar teeth.

There is a distinct gap, the diastema between the incisor and the cheek teeth. By the incisor teeth, rodents are able to gnaw the feed or other materials efficiently. The incisor teeth grow continuously during the lifetime of the animals.

Special jaw movements are the characteristic features in the rodents (when chewing activity is carried out, the lower jaw moves backwards, hence, the upper and lower cheek teeth gets opposed but its incisors that are positioned one behind the other are not. Internal cheek pouches are present in few rodents (eg. Golden hamster).

Classification should be known for a better understanding on these creatures.

Classification

 

Sub-order

No. of

 

species

Sciuromorpha (“Squirrellike”) Eg. Squirrels, marmots, chipmunks, gophers, beavers, kangaroo rats, springhaas etc.

366

Myomorpha (“ratlike”) Eg. Rat, mice, voles, hamsters, lemmings etc.

1183

Hystricomorpha (“porcupinelike”) Eg. Porcupines, cavies, capybaras, chinchillas, agoutis etc.

180

Other species

Tuco-tucos, Nutria, Guinea pig, woodchuck, Pacas, Pacarana, Eastern fox squirrel, burrowing rodents like woodchuck or groundhog (Marmota monax) etc.

HYRACOIDEA

This order contains small rabbit like mammals but have short ears and the tail is reduced.

The taxonomists have classified the hyraxes, proboscideans (elephants) and sirenians (sea cows) as subungulates.

The hyraxes were earlier found to be close to the elephants due to following reasons:

o

Large bulge of the anterior maxillary skull

o

Character and position of teeth

o

Close junction of the four toes

o

Posterior position of the malar bones

TUBELIDENTATA

o

These animals have stout, pig like body with thick skin.

o

Long snout with round nostrils at the tip.

o

The tongue is protrusible.

o

Long ears are present.

Aardvark is the only representative of this order. The other common names include earth hog, ant bear and many local African names. This is a nocturnal animal.

MODULE-3 : TAXONOMY-II

This unit is dealing with major wild animal groups classified under artiodactylids, perissodactylids and carnivores like feilds

The objectives are

To know about the animals classified under odd and even toed animal groups

To know about different species of felids among the carnivores

ARTIODACTYLIDS

Artiodactylids mean the even-toed large mammals.

This order consists of different families like cervidae, bovidae, suidae, tayassuidae, camelidae etc.

Various wild animals that are present in this category are often encountering the livestock as the competitors for feed in some vulnerable areas of this country.

SWINE GROUP

The superfamily “suidoidae” comprises two families called as suidae and tayassuidae.

Although the animals under these families are similar in shape, they differ in terms of anatomy as well as in the disease-susceptibility.

Tayassuids

The tayassuidae (Tayassuids) consists of two native New world suids given below:

o

Collared peccary (Tayassu tajacu)

o

White lipped peccary (Tayassu pecari)

Suids

The suidae (suids) has two sub-genera in India. The Sus-the wild boar and Porcula-the Pigmy hog. The old world wild swine includes the wild boar (Sus scrofa) which was native to Asia and Europe.

In India, wild pigs are seen through out the country in the forests.

These are the prolific breeders. The body is stocky and barrel like with the motile snout that is truncated terminally and has a disk like cartilage in the tips.

For rooting and turning the soil of surface, the snout is useful and the animals are having a thick layer of subcutaneous adipose tissues which is a characteristic feature of these animals.

o

Wild swine of North America:

Feral pigs

European wild swine

Native populations of collared peccaries .

o

Wild swine of Africa:

o

Giant forest pig (Hylochoerus meinertzhageni)

o

Bush pig (Potamochoerus porcus)

o

Wart hog (Phacochoerus aethiopicus)

Note: In Java and Borneo, babirusa (Babyrousa babyrussa) are seen.

Pigmy hog

These animals are seen in small herds of 5 to 20. It is the world‟s smallest pig. These animals live in forested tracts of Sikkim and Assam. They are also present in Nepal and Bhutan.

These animals are thought to be extinct once. The habitat preference of this species is similar to wild pigs and the two species are closely related to each other

CAMELIDS

The camelids belong to the sub-order called “Tylopoda” and family called “camelidae”. Camels have a unique capacity to pass the desiccated fecal materials when water intake is restricted. In the Arabian desert during the summer, freshly passed feces can be used for fuel. Camels are pseudoruminants.

In this family, followings are seen:

o Old world camelids and South American camelids.

Old world camelids

Dromedary camel that has a zoological name of “Camelus dromedarius: Found in hot and cold deserts of Asia, Africa and middle east.

Bacterian camel that has a zoological name of “Camelus bactrianus”: Found in cold and arid deserts of Asia, Kazakhstan, Mangolia and China.

South American camelids

Llama (Llama glama)

Guanaco(Lama guanicoe)

Vicuna ( Llama vicugna)

Alpaca (Llamapacos)

GIRAFFE

Giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis) belongs to the family entitled “Giraffidae” which also comprises the okapi (Okapia johnstoni). These animals are the ruminants.

Both species have the elongated neck but the neck of the Giraffe is longer than that of Okapi. Like other mammals, they have seven cervical vertebrae.

HIPPOPOTAMUSES

Two types of hippos as quoted below are confined to Africa:

o

Nile hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius)

 

The Nile hippos live in matriarchial units living on a central mud bank or sandbar called a “crèche” in the middle of the established herd territory.

The territory marking

is

carried out

by

swishing of the soft fecal materials by tail

movements.

o

Pigmy hippopotamus (Choeropsis liberiensis)

 

Pigmy hippos live in solitaries and these mini-hippos have large circular nostrils and eyes set to the side of the head instead of raised up.

These animals mark their territory by feces.

They are unique in artiodactylids, in the way that they all walk on all four toes that are attached to one another by a membrane. Among the artiodactls, uniquely, these animals walk on all four toes that are attached to each by a membrane “web”.

WILD OXEN

The followings are the significant species in this group:

o Gaur or Indian bison (Bos gaurus)

In these wild animals, gaur are seen in Central India- MP and Chhatisgar, Western Ghats southwards from south Maharashtra, Mudumalai Anaimalai, Dindigul region and Palani regions.

o

Wild buffalo (Bubalus bubalis)

Wild buffaloes are seen in the plains of Brahmaputra in Assam, and Orissa. Yak are seen in Ladak. Banteng are seen in Manipur and areas near Burma.

o

Yak (Bos grunniens)

Yaks are seen in the cold mountainous regions. A fully mature gaur may be having a body weight of about one tone.

o

Banteng or Tsaine

ANTELOPES

Bovidae also comprises the antelopes and gazelles. The antelopes and gazelles are called as the earliest ruminants.

They possess characters common to oxen as well as sheep and goats.

Antelopes have a gland below the eyes that is more prominent in antelopes like blackbucks.

The horns have a considerable length with a bony core.

BLACKBUCK (ANTILOPE CERVIPARA)

Blackbuck (Antilope cervipara)

Blackbucks are seen in Point Calimere wildlife regions, Guindy national park and Velavadar wildlife sanctuary in Gujarat state, particularly. However, they are present through out India, in general. The horns are spiral in nature. The Indian races are attractive to look at.

The horns may be about 20 to 25 cms long and the animal may have body weight of about 40 kg in case of males in particular. The „Vishnoi‟ people of northern India venerate and protect these animals.

INDIAN RACES OF BLACKBUCK

Four races of Blackbuck in India

o

Cervicapra

o

Rupicapra

o

Rajputanae

o

Centralis

NILGAI

In case of Nilgai (Boselaphus tragocamelus), the male animals are also called as Blue bull. They are seen in Himalayas to Mysore (Not seen in Bengal, Assam, Malabar Coast and Tamilnadu).

These are generally seen in dry deciduous and thorn forests of Indian peninsula and are large horse like animals.

FOUR HORNED ANTELOPE

Four horned antelope (Tetracerus quadricornis) are also called as Chowsingha, seen in south of Himalayas in both the wooded and hilly areas.

These animals have two pairs of horns and are exclusively seen in India. The front pair of horn is shorter and often, the first pair is no more than a horny covered stud or a mere knob as if a bony projection covered with the skin.

Another well developed feature is the presence of a pair of well developed glands between the false hooves of the hind limbs.

CHIRU OR TIBETAN ANTELOPE

Chiru are present in northern Ladak and also in Tibet.

These animals are related to the Saiga antelopes of the Russian steppes.

EXOTIC BOVIDS

American bison

African buffalo

Addax

Bongo

Buffon‟s kob

Bushbuck

Steinbok

Greater kudu

Klipspringer

Lesser kudu

Topi

Blesbok

Nyala

Hartebeest (Kongonil)

Eland

Dik-dik

Anoa

Roan antelope

East African Oryx

Waterbuck

Kouprey

Sable antelope

CHINKARA OR INDIAN GAZELLE

These animals are present in the plains and low hills of north western and central India.

These animals are seen commonly in desert zones and don‟t frequent cultivated lands.

These are the slender and gracious animals.

The Horns of the males are ringed, while the females are smooth and at times, the females are hornless too.

CERVIDS

More deer are poached or hunted in many parts of the world than any other species. These animals are kept as most popular exhibits and are often kept as mixed exhibits also in zoological garden or zoo or zoological park or in deer parks.

Various species of deer are also farmed in many countries and the antlers are harvested in a systematic manner, for medicinal purposes. Antler is the anatomical specialty of these animals, in general.

SPOTTED DEER

Spotted deer (Axis axis) are also called as chital. Seen through out India except in arid plains of Punjab, Sind and in a large area of Rajputana. The antlers are much attractive in nature.

These are the animals that are more prolific in breeding. These are the most sociable animal of all the deer. They are frequently seen in association with many other animal species like langurs. They are extremely gregarious in nature.

SAMBAR DEER

Sambar deer (Cervus unicolor) are seen in the wooded regions of whole India. This is the largest deer in India and has the grandest antler. These animals are nocturnal or crepuscular in habit.

In addition to the spotted deer, the tiger attacks the sambar deer also as their main prey.

The tail is thick and small. The hair materials are coarse and wiry. Sambar and swamp deer have large ears unlike the spotted deer and hence, able to hear sounds well.

BARKING DEER

Barking deer (Muntiacus muntjak) are also called as Muntjac or Rib faced deer.

The name of barking deer is here because it makes a sound that resembles the barking sound of dog.

Face has „V‟ shaped ridges. They are seen through out India.

The Muntjac of north India is Muntiacus muntjak vaginalis and the Muntjac of south India is Muntiacus muntjak aureus.

SWAMP DEER

Swamp deer (Cervus duvaceli) are also called as “Barasingha”.

These deer have the body weight of about 225 to 320 Kg and the height may be around 150 cms. This is rarely seen in large herds.

Swamp deer are found in three states of India, as follows:

o

Kanha Tiger Reserve (MP state) and is called as "Hard ground Swamp Deer"

o

Dudhwa Tiger Reserve ( Uttaranchal state)

o

Kaziranga Tiger Reserve (Assam state)

HOG DEER

Hog deer (Axis porcinus) are small in size and are sighted in the low alluvial grass plains of north India from Sind and Punjab to Assam.

These animals place the head in low condition and moves without the usual bouncing action that is characteristic to a deer and hence, it has been given the name of hog deer.

These animals are hardly 60 cms at the shoulder.

MUSK DEER

Musk deer (Moschus moschiferus) are sighted in the central and north eastern Asia and Nepal. In India, they are seen in Uttaranchal Kedarnath hill, Sikkim and Kashmir. There is no antler in these animals.

This is considered as an undeveloped form of deer. The animal is extremely mobile and the extra large lateral hooves allow this animal to walk on snow.

They live singly or in pairs. The musk gland is located below the abdomen skin in male.

MOUSE DEER

Mouse deer (Tragulus meminna) are also called as the Indian chevrotain. They belong to the family tragulidae. These resemble deer but are more closely related to the camelids and pigs.

These are the smallest deer in India and have the measurement of about 25 to 30 cms as height.

These animals are seen mostly in south India and also found in Sri Lanka as well as in Myammar.

This is a timid animal with a narrow head and pointed muzzle.

KASHMIRI DEER

These animals are also called as Hangul. These animals are related to the European deer.

This deer inhabits the coniferous forests and the grassy meadows in Kashmir himalayas notably in the Dachigam sanctuary between 1700 and 3000 metres-elevation.

The females remain in slopes for fawning.

MANIPURI DEER

Manipuri deer (Cervus eldi) are also called as “Thamin”. Locally it is called as “Sanghai”. These are more in numbers in Keibul Lanjao sanctuary. These deer are present in Myammar and Thailand.

These deer move around on vast areas of floating organic matter called as the Phum or Phumdi.

The movement over the phumdi forces the deer to have a constant shuffling of its feet to maintain the balance. Hence these deer are also called as the “dancing deer”.

WILD SHEEP

Bharal or Blue sheep (Pseudois nayaur): Seen in Ladak, Sikkim and Himalayas.

Marco Polo‟s sheep (Ovis ammon polii): Seen in Hunza of India. (They are seen in large numbers in Russian pamirs)

Nayan or Great Tibetan sheep (Ovis ammon hodgsoni): Seen in Sikkim.

Shapu or Urial (Ovis orientalis): Seen in Ladak, Punjab, Sind and Baluchistan

WILD GOAT

Nilgiri tahr (Hemitragus hylocrius): Seen in Nilgiris to Anaimalais and southwards along the Western ghats from 4000-6000 feet.

Wild goat (Capra hircus): Sighted in Baluchistan and Western Sind.

Ibex (Capra ibex): Seen in Himalayas & Pin valley of Himachal Pradesh state.

Himalayan tahr (Hemitragus jemlahicus).

PERISSODACTYLIDS

This

group

of

wild

animals

Rhinocerotidae (rhinoceroses).

consists

of

families-

Equidae

(equids)

and

Tapiridae

(tapirs)

and

The middle digit of the fore and hind limbs is present in a prominent manner, carrying much of the body weight .

EQUIDS

The following members belong to equidae:

o

Wild horse (Przewalski‟s wild horse)

o

Wild asses (Number of Asian and African wild asses): Seen in Gujarat state

o

Zebras

All members of equidae family are solipeds and like the domestic horse they are descendants of the early „dawn horse‟ (Eohippus) of some million years ago.

TAPIRS

These animals fall in the family tapiridae. The tapirs resemble the short-tailed donkey in case of general form and size. The nose and upper lip are extended to form a short but highly mobile trunk.

These animals are represented by four species in a single genus, as quoted below:

o

Brazilian tapirs (Tapirus terestrus)

o

Mountain or woolly tapirs (Tapirus pinchaque)

o

Saddleback or Malayan tapirs (Tapirus indicus): Restricted to south east Asia.

o

Baird‟s tapirs (Tapirus bairdii)

RHINOCEROSES

These wild animals belong to the Rhinocerotidae family. The rhinoceroses have following common features in general:

o

Massive body

o

Short leg that end on broad, three-toed feet.

o

Horny pads of the feet are delicate when compared to the size of the animal.

Asiatic and African species of rhinoceroses are available in general.

Asiatic species

Three are four Asiatic species of rhinoceroses

o

Javan rhinoceros (Rhinoceros sondaicus)

o

Sumatran rhinoceros (Didermocerus sumatrensis): These are called as Asiatic two horned rhinoceroses.

o

Indian rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis)

Indian rhinoceroses

Among rhinoceroses, the Indian rhinoceroses are the ones that are most primitive in appearance with its armor like hide and small head and are one horned.

The skin is having a rugged appearance with armor like plates on body.

The animal is well distributed in the Gangetic plain. The animals are present in Assam and in parts of West Bengal.

These animals are highly suited to the swampy tarai habitat. These are territorial in nature.

African rhinos

There are two species of African rhinos, as quoted below:

o

White rhinoceros (Didermocerus sinus)

o

Black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis)

Details

African rhinos

Asiatic rhino

Presence of horns

Two horns

Single horn

Length of horn

Lengthy

Short, comparatively

Incisors

Absent in both African

species

Present

CARNIVORA

The common characters of carnivores are given below:

o

Meat eaters

o

Presence of canine teeth

o

Intestinal tract is short and is adapted to the rapid digestion as well as the assimilation of meat.

o

All species have anal glands. (The species like the striped skunk with a zoological name of Mephitis mephitis may eject the contents of anal gland as a defensive maneuver)

o

Os penis is present in case of males.

o

Lack of clavicle (this helps in the freedom for the movement of forelimb)

o

Ulna is well developed.

o

Toes end in claws

Sub-order of carnivores

Fissipedia is the sub-order that comprises most known terrestrial carnivorous wild animals like lion, tiger, panther, wolf, hyaena, wild dog, jackals etc.

CLASSIFICATION OF CARNIVORES

 
 

Family

Common names

No. of species

Canidae

Wild dogs, jackal, fox, wolf

37

Felidae

Tiger, lion, panther, jungle cat etc.

36

Ursidae

Bears

7

Mustelidae

Skinks, otters, weasels

68

Viverridae

Mongooses, Civets

82

Procyonidae

Raccoons, kinkajou,

pandas

18

Hyaenidae

Hyaenas

4

FELIDS

Lion

o Lions (Panthera leo) are found only in Gir forests of Gujarat state, lying within the Jumnagadh district covering about 1280 Kms. These are the majestic animals in Indian forests living in prides.

Tiger

o Tigers (Panthera tigris) are the endangered wild animals found all over India from Himalayas to Cape Camorin except in the deserts of Rajasthan, Punjab, Cutch and Sind.

Panther

o Panthers (Panthera pardus) are highly adaptable in nature to the environment and are seen all over India. There are three races present in India (Panthers from Sind and Baluchistan and Kashmir are regarded as separate races)

Other felids have also to be understood in terms of conservation of wild fauna.

OTHER FELIDS

Clouded leopard (Neofelis nebulosa)

o These animals are seen in Assam and Sikkim.

Cheetah or Hunting leopard (Acinonyx jubatus)

o Cheetah are extinct in India at present.

Caracal and Jaguars

o Caracals are seen in north and north-west hills of Cutch and Jaguars are considered to be the sturdy animals.

Lynx (Felis lynx)

o Lynx are seen in upper Indus valley, Ladak, Gilgit and Tibet. These animals are called as “isabellina”.

Indian desert cat

o Indian desert cats are seen in deserts of northwestern India ex tending to the drier regions of Central India.

Marbled cat (Felis marmorata)

o Marbled cats are sighted in Sikkim and Assam . Single race occurs in India

Leopard cat (Felis bengalensis)

o Leopard cats can be sighted in wider parts of India from Kashmir to Cape Camorin.

Golden cat (Felis temmincki)

o In Assam and Sikkim, Golden cats are present.

Pallas cat (Felis manul )

o Pallas cats are seen in Ladak

MODULE-4 : TAXONOMY-III

This module relates to various types of canids, wolves, hyaenas etc.

The objectives are

To reveal different species of canids, viverrids, ursids and mustelids.

To know about species of marine mammals

To understand about various species of reptiles like crocodiles, serpentines, chelonians and lizards

CANIDS

The canids are the commonly sighted wild animals in general. The offspring are born relatively underdeveloped and are very dependent on their parents for their survival.

Many times, some species of canids travel a long distance as the case with the wild dogs or jackals in search of food resources.

COMMON FEATURES OF CANIDS

Erect ears

Strong and non-retractile claws

Long muzzle

Males have a baculum in the penis.

Perfect digitigrade feet

Multiparous in nature

All the canids almost resemble the domestic canids in terms of anatomical features.

INDIAN WILD DOG

Indian wild dogs (Cuon alpinus) are also called as Dholes. These animals are having a hunting habit in packs only. They prey on a number of animals like deer, sheep, gaur, pigs etc.

A large pack may attach bigger animals like buffalo and gaur. They help to improve the prey population by eliminating the old and diseased individuals.

These are found in Andhra Pradesh and in Mudumalai and Anaimalai regions.

EXOTIC WILD DOGS

Exotic wild dogs are given below:

o

Dingo or Wild dogs of Australia

o

Cape hunting dogs of south of Sahara

JACKAL

Jackal (Canis aureus) are present through out India in small number on any kind of habitat ranging from humid dense forests to dry open plains. This animal comes out during the dusk and retires by dawn.

This can make a typical howl that is long drawn and high pitched one. Dead carcasses are eaten by them and jackals also feed on weak livestock and poultry.

INDIAN FOX

Indian foxes (Vulpes bengalensis) are the small slim animals with slender limbs.

This are seen in agricultural fields and are solitary hunters but appears to tolerate the presence of common mongoose near its den.

RED FOXES

These animals are seen in Sikkim to western Himalayas including the arid zone of the north-west.

In the cooler Himalayan region, the animals prefer to live amidst small cultivated lands and the animal is mainly nocturnal in nature.

These animals pair for life, occupying the same den year after year.

WOLF

Wolf (Canis lupus) are seen in several parts of India.

These animals assume a height of about 65-75 cm and the weight of these carnivores may be about 18-

28Kg.

HYAENA

Hyaena belongs to the family “Hyaenidae”. These are the animals with powerful jaws. Striped hyaena (Hyaena hyaena) is the species present in India. Hyaenas have large anal glands and are scavengers.

They are nocturnal in nature and are stocky dog like animals inhabiting the plains of southwest Asia and Africa. Walks on toes, four on each foot.

There species of hyaena are:

o Striped hyaena, Brown hyaena and Spotted hyaena.

Note

Striped hyaena is the only species available in India

VIVERRIDS

These are the diverse are the old world carnivores. Most viverrids have scent glands in the anal region that can emit a strong smelling fluid and these scent materials secreted from the genera Civettictis, Vicerra, and Viverricula are called “civet”.

These materials are having pheromone like effects. Location of these species should be well known in general for the attending veterinarian.

LOCATION OF VIVERRIDS

Viverrids

Place

Common palm civet (Toddy cat) (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus)

Whole India except desert zones of Punjab and Sind

Brown palm civet (Paradoxurus jardoni)

North Kanara and hill ranges of South India

Himalayan palm civet (Peguma larvata)

Kashmir, Himalayas and Assam

Spotted linsang or Tiger civet (Prionodon pardicolor)

Assam and Sikkim

Binturang or Bear cat (Arctictis binturong)

Assam and Sikkim

Small Indian civet (Viverricula indica)

Through out India

Large Indian civet (Viverra zibetha)

Sikkim, Assam and upper Bengal

Common mongoose (Herpestes edwardsi)

Whole India

Small Indian mongoose (Herpestes auropunctatus)

Northern India (Kashmir to Bengal, Orissa and Assam)

Stripe necked mongoose

Western ghats from north Kanara , southwards to some of he adjoining south India hill range

Crab eating mongoose (Herpestes urva)

Assam

OTHER VIVERRID

African civets (Civettictis civetta)

Blotched genet (Genetta tigrina)

Fossa (Cryptoprocta ferox)

Malagasy fossa (Fossa fossa)

Yellow mongoose (Cynictis penicilata)

Banded mongoose (Mungos mungo)

Slender-tailed meercat (Suricata suricatta)

URSIDS

The bears have a compact body with a short neck and quadrupedal gait. However, they are capable of standing like human and are prone for stereotypical behavior if left uncared or bored.

These animals are exploited in circuses, wristle events etc. Bears are exceedingly dangerous in nature. Bears are usually solitary in nature.

Important species of bears

Sloth bear (Melursus ursinus)

Asiatic bear (Selenarctos thibetanus)

Spectacled bear (Tremarctos arnatus)

Malayan sun bear (Helarctos malayanus)

Polar bear (Thalarctos maritimus)

Alaskan brown bear (Ursus arctos)

American black bear (Ursus americanus)

Beas in india

Sloth bears are endemic to India. Found through out the country in the forested regions.

The outcrops of rocks or tumbled boulders offer them shelter during the hot season.

Sloth bears tolerates the presence of spotted deer in close proximity but the response may reveal variations with other species.

Various types of vocalizations are reported in these animals. Big head and rounded ear lobes are present. The paws are short and broad.

Brown bears are present in north-western and central Himalayas. Himalayan black bear are present in Kashmir, Assam and Himalayas.

MUSTELIDS

This group comprises the following wild animals:

o Otters o Martens o Weasels o Pole cats o Badgers. OTTERS Species Locations Common
o
Otters
o
Martens
o
Weasels
o
Pole cats
o
Badgers.
OTTERS
Species
Locations
Common otter (Lutra lutra)
Seen in river beds of South India and then only in Kashmir,
Himalayas and Assam.
Clawless otter (Aonyx cinerea)
South India
Smooth Indian otter (Lutra
perspicillata)
From Himalayas and Sind to extreme South in India.
MARTENS
Species
Locations
Himalayan marten (Martes flavigula)
Seen in Himalaya and Assam
Nilgiri martens (Martes gwatkinsi)
Seen in Nilgiris, south Coorg and Travancore
WEASELS
Species
Locations
Himalayan weasel (Mustela sibirica)
Himalayas

Ermine or Stoat (Mustela ermine)

Kashmir

Yellow bellied weasel (Mustela kathiah)

Western Himalayas eastwards to Assam

Striped backed weasel (Mustela strigidorsa)

Himalayas (it is a rare animal)

MARBLED POLE CATS AND BADGERS

Marbled pole cats

Marbled pole cats (Vormela peregusna) are seen in Baluchistan only.

Badgers

Species

Locations

Indian ferret badgers

Assam

Chinese ferret badger

Assam ranging eastwards to upper Burma, South-China and Indo-Chinese regions

Honey badgers or Ratels (Mellivora capensis)

From Himalayas to Cape Camorin

Hog badgers (Arctonyx collaris)

Assam and eastern Himalayas

MARINE MAMMALS

Orders

Marine mammals

Cetacea

Whales, dolphins and porpoises

Note:These animals are spindle shaped and dolphins and whales use echolocation like bats in locating the prey species.

Pinnipedia

Seals, Walruses and Sea-lions (marine carnivores)

Sirenia

Dugong or sea cows and manatees

OTHER MARINE MAMMALS

Harbor seal

California sea lion

Northern elephant seal

Northern fur seal

Gray seal

Bottle-nosed dolphin

Killer whale

Pilot whale

Beluga whale

Marine mammals that spend large time in marine environment

Polar bears which are the carnivores falling in Ursidae family

Sea otters belonging to the family Mustelidae.

LOCATION OF MARINE MAMMALS

Species

Locations

Sperm whale (Physeter catodan), Pygmy sperm whale (Kogia breviceps) and Blue whale (Balaenoptera musculus)

Tropical, temperate and arctic waters of het oceans of the world

Common Dolphin (Delphinus delphis)

Tropical and temperate seas of the world

Gangetic dolphin (Platanista gangetica)

Ganges, Brahmaputra and Indus; they are also seen in the tidal limits but do not enter sea

Dugong or sea cow (Dugong dugon)

Shores of Indian ocean, Cast of Malabar, Gulf of Kutch, Gulf of Mannar and around Andaman islands

REPTILES

The repilian class has about 6457 species and evolved from the primitive amphibians.

Birds and mammals have evolved from reptiles. Reptiles are the ectothermic animals and air breathing vertebrates.

Turtles are the most ancient reptiles and the snakes the most recent. Since the reptiles share many anatomical features with bird, both the reptile and birds are some times considered together in the single group entitled as “Sauropsida”.

It consists of chelonians, crocodiles, lizards, snakes etc. Reptiles are seen in all continents except Antarctica and on most islands.

COMMON FEATURES OF REPTILES

Reptiles have no gills and lungs are present.

Absence of no hair

Absence of feather

They either lay egg or give birth to young but in both instances the embryo, like that of a mammal is enclosed in an amnion.

Whether hatched from an egg or born alive, the reptiles don‟t pass through a larval stage or undergo metamorphosis as do amphibians.

Reptiles are capable of growth through out the life

Dry water-proof skin with horny scales are present

Scales are not separated as seen in fish but they are folds of skin.

Ecdysis is a common feature

Majority of the reptiles are carnivorous especially the snakes (Marine Green turtle and Green Iguana are herbivores).

ORDERS AND SUB-ORDERS OF REPTILES

Orders

There are three orders in reptilian group:

Testudinata (Chelonia)

o This group comprises turtles, tortoises, terrapins and sea-turtles

Crocodilia

o This group comprises crocodiles, caimans, alligators and gavials.

Squamata

o This group comprises lizards and snakes

Sub-orders

Amphisbaenia (Eg. Worm lizards)

Sphenodontia (Eg. Tuatara in Newzealand)

Serpentes (Ophidia) (Eg. Snakes)

Lacertilia (Sauria) (Eg. Lizards)

REPTILES - DISTRIBUTION IN GENERAL

 

Reptiles

 

World

India

Crocodiles

 

22

3

Turtles

 

242

32

Lizards

 

2800

155

Snakes

 

2750

244

IMPORTANT SNAKES

Cobra (Naja naja naja)

King cobra (Ophiophagus hannah)

Krait (Bungarus caeruleus)

Russell‟s viper (Vipera russelli)

Saw scaled viper (Echis carinatus)

Indian Rock python (Python molurus)

Reticulated python (Python reticulatus)

Anaconda or South American Boa

Sea snakes (Eg. Hook-nosed sea snake= Enhydrina schistosa) etc.

IMPORTANT LIZARDS

Common Monitor (Varanus bengalensis)

Water Monitor (Varanus salvator)

Yellow Monitor (Varanus flavescens)

Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis)

Gila Monster (Heloderma suspectum)

Beaded Lizard (Heloderma horridum)

Worm Lizards (Bipes and Rhineura)

IMPORTANT CROCODILE, GHAVIAL, CAIMAN AND ALLIGATOR

Mugger or Marsh crocodile (Crocodylus palustris)

Salt water crocodile or Estuarine crocodile or Indo-Pacific crocodile (Crocodylus porosus)

Gharial or Ghavial (Gavialis gangeticus)

Cayman (Caiman crocodilus)

American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis)

Chinese alligator (Alligator chinensis)

MODULE-5 : HABITAT OF WILD ANIMALS

This module is dealing with various habitats occupied by various wild fauna. Further, you are able to know basic information on biogeographic zones, food, cover, space, wet lands, sanctuary and national park.

The objectives are

To enrich understanding on various habitats of wild animals.

To know about specific habitats occupied by selected species of wild animals

To understand about wet lands, sanctuary and national parks

HABITAT

This is a place in which a particular organism or species lives.

Factors influencing the habitat of the wild animals are variable in nature and act on different intensities, in general.

HABITAT CLASSIFICATIONS

It is to be noted that the habitats vary from each other. For example, the habitat comprising the thick leaf canopy at the top of the tree is more different from the habitat that can be noticed at the ground level.

Classifications of different habitats are made on the basis of multiple factors like size, biosphere, biogeographic zones and ecological sub-units etc.

SIZE BASED HABITAT TYPES

There are two types of habitat based on the size of the concerned area :

o

Macro types.

o

Micro types.

Macro Habitat

This comprises larger areas than the micro habitat. Control of the factors in macro habitats is more difficult as the case with land-use patterns, velocity of wind, amount of rain in an area etc.

Micro Habitat

This is the one associating with a small area (few square centimeters as the case with the area under a fallen tree trunk or a stone material found in the forest).

Micro habitats may be easily managed by forest managers, unlike the macro habitats.

SIZE BASED HABITAT TYPES

There are two types of habitat based on the size of the concerned area :

o

Macro types.

o

Micro types.

Macro Habitat

This comprises larger areas than the micro habitat. Control of the factors in macro habitats is more difficult as the case with land-use patterns, velocity of wind, amount of rain in an area etc.

Micro Habitat

This is the one associating with a small area (few square centimeters as the case with the area under a fallen tree trunk or a stone material found in the forest).

Micro habitats may be easily managed by forest managers, unlike the macro habitats.

BIOSPHERE BASED MAJOR HABITATS

Four types are seen as the major habitats in the biosphere in general

o

Marin

o

Estuarine

o

Fresh water

o

Terrestrial

o Estuarine o Fresh water o Terrestrial Marin habitat  This habitat is being used widely

Marin habitat

This habitat is being used widely by marine mammals, fish, coral reeves etc. inhabit these areas. This is the largest in the biosphere.

There are two forms are there in the marine habitat:

o

Benthic forms - These are the animals and plants that inhabit the bottom of the sea.

o

Pelagic forms - These are the animals and plants that inhabit the open sea .

Marine mammals like dugong, whales, dolphins, sea otters etc. are given more significance in general in case of the marine habitat.

Estuarine habitat

This habitat uniquely represents the confluence of fresh water with sea. Hence, as per the waves or tides, the salinity in this habitat may reveal many variations. It is a commonly found observation that in case of high tides, the salinity is maximum.

But at the low tides and at periods of high rain fall, there is often an increase in the fresh water level.

Fresh water habitat

Fresh water habitats are small and are some what easily accessible and comprises plankton and nekton inhabiting them.

Terrestrial habitat

Terrestrial habitats are comparatively a larger type of habitat in general but at the same time lesser than the marine habitat. This type of habitat is a complicated one in general. The biotic communities reveal so many variations among themselves and finally they constitute the different biomes.

GLOBAL SOURCES BASED CLASSIFICATION OF HABITATS

Deserts

Grasslands

Deciduous forests

Coniferous forests

Evergreen forests

Tropical rain forests

Mediterranean scrub

Mountains

Polar regions

Oceans

BIOGEOGRAPHIC ZONES AS HABITATS

Islands (0.3)

Coasts (2.5)

Western Ghats (4.0)

North-east (5.2)

Trans-Himalaya (5.6)

Himalaya (6.4)

Desert (6.6)

Gangetic plain (10.8)

Semi-Arid (16.6)

Deccan peninsula (42.0)

Note: Figures in parenthesis indicate per cent of total geographical area of India: 3287263 sq.km.

HABITATS BASED ON ECOLOGICAL SUB-UNITS
HABITATS BASED ON ECOLOGICAL SUB-UNITS

HABITATS BASED ON ECOLOGICAL SUB-UNITS

HABITATS BASED ON ECOLOGICAL SUB-UNITS

This type of classification helps to understand the wild fauna available in different eco systems prevailing in our country.

Wide variety of habitats are available in India and hence the biodiversity of this country is a unique one. India is considered as one of the mega biodiversity nations in the world.

Desert Region

This habitat comprise trans-Indus districts of Punjab, Western Sind and Baluchistan valley and forms the eastern limits of a great desert region extending through Iran, Iraq and Arabia to the desert parts of North Africa.

Wild animals of desert are different from the ones that are seen in general at the other regions.

Desert regions are found in many parts of the world like Sahara of North Africa etc.

Tropical rain forest region

Heavy rain fall areas are contained in this division.

Examples

North-eastern regions.

Himalayan slopes consisting of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura.

Western Ghats of the south India including the Malabar Coast (Dense forest gorges called as the Sholas are seen in Nilgriis which is an off shoot of the Western Ghats).

Tropical evergreen forests or Indo-Malayan sub-region

The fauna of this region has similarities between both Indian as well as Malayan and Indo-Chinese fauna.

Himalayan mountain region

Animals of this region are mostly the Palaearctic type. Variations are seen even within the Himalayan mountain regions, as the case with eastern parts, higher altitudes in the western Himalayas from Kashmir including Ladakh and Kumaon and Himalayan foothills covering the eastern frontiers of Kashmir and Assam.

Peninsular Indian sub-region

Animals of this region are mostly the Palaearctic type. Variations are seen even within the Himalayan mountain regions, as the case with eastern parts, higher altitudes in the western Himalayas from Kashmir including Ladakh and Kumaon and Himalayan foothills covering the eastern frontiers of Kashmir and Assam.

SPECIFIC WILD ANIMALS AND HABITATS

Specific wild animals

Location

Slender loris

Tamilnadu

Slow loris

North-eastern India

Red Panda and Binturong

Eastern regions

Hyalobates hoolock

Arunachal Pradesh and Assam

Pig tailed macaque and Assam macaque and Leaf monkey or capped langur

Assam

COMPONENTS OF WILDLIFE HABITAT

The components of wildlife habitat may be multiple. However, for the purpose of understanding, major ones are given below:

o

o

o

o

Food

Cover

Water

Space

FOOD

Feed resources vary from habitat to habitat. Accordingly, the selection of feed items whether it is a herbivore or a carnivore or omnivore also varies. Majority of he animals go for food items that have an easy access.

FOOD SPECTRUM

This is the range of food materials that are taken by the concerned wild animal species. Food spectrum varies from species to species. The different components in this food spectrum are available in large numbers in particular seasons or periods of the year. In a palatability gradient, the relished food materials rank high always.

Prey species needs to be abundant for the survival of the concerned wild animal species in a wildlife area. Similarly, the biodiversity of the concerned prey animal species needs to be more and hence, the predators may have the choice in selecting the type of wild animal species as the prey for it.

Carnivores mostly go for the „economic prey‟.

Example

Tigers prefer gaur or sambar mostly rather than going for the prey species like mouse deer.

Herbivores generally select materials of lower energy when compared to the carnivores. Hence, these species are prone to suffer from either qualitative food stress due to the lesser nutritional values of the feeds under consumption or from quantitative food stress that occurs due to shortage.

COVER

Cover gives protection of the wild animals species from the followings:

o

Weather

o

Severe summer

o

Winter

o

Predators

o

Enemies

Provides a better vantage point for the wild animal in a wide area Covers may be a natural one or an artificial one.

TYPES OF COVER

There are many types of cover. Similarly, it may be a vegetal or non vegetal in nature. It is better to have simulation of natural one or if possible a natural one.

However, it is to be remembered that escape-cover may not be an essential one for wild animal species like the black buck.

Good grass growth by itself may have a better cover for them. Different types of vegetations make up these covers.

Usually caves and overhands act as non-vegetal covres. Other structures that also bears the cover value are:

o

Burrows

o

Old buildings

o

Holes

o

Abandoned buildings

o

Drystream beds etc.

Ambush cover

This is defined as the cover that is utilized by a predatory animal for ambushing its prey. This can be a vegetal or non-vegetal. Covers are interchangeable.

The ambush cover of one species may serve as escape cover for another species.

Breeding cover

This is important to have a successful breeding potential of the concerned wild animal species.

o

Tigers use caves nad overhands a cubbing places.

o

Hard ground barasinha (deer) population of MP state needs tall grass as the breeding cover.

o

Squirrels build nests to suit their arboreal life.

Roosting cover for birds

Birds need a safe area for the purpose of resting and the cover that provides facility for this purpose is called as the roosting cover.

o

Acacia nilotica trees planted in the marshy regions of Bharatpur helps to provide a better roosting cover for birds.

o

Large birds like vultures need tree cover that is well convenient for them to spread their wings and have a take-off in the air. It is to be understood that the raising directly to soaring height in one stroke is not possible from the ground level.

Loafing cover

Loafing cover is the one in which some wild animal species try to spend their time aimlessly and this may be a secluded place in a habitat.

The place offering shade in summer and providing adequate protection from the wind in winter can serve as a loafing cover.

Refuge cover

This essentially means vegetation from which the wild animals can not be sent out during hunting. This is a sports related terminology.

For example, the jungle fowl can be hunted only in the open space.

WATER

Water is highly a required item in a habitat of the wild animal species. When the water resources are poor in a habitat, then the quality of the concerned habitat is considered as a poor one from the conservation point of view.

Riparian vegetation along the stream banks may be considered linking places or corridors for the animal movement. Animals in desert regions generally depend on the succulent vegetation or metabolic water of the body.

Water bodies play a greater role in the disease transmission esp. in cases of contamination by grazing livestock that utilizes the water resources.

SPACE

Space is a must for any wild animal species. The availability of space is influenced by followings:

o

Edges.

o

Ecotones.

o

Territory.

o

Home ranges.

o

Interspersion.

o

Availability of mates.

Mongamous species suffer a lot in breeding as the case with rhinos or Sarus cranes. The mates may not be adequate for these species in a given space some times.

The problem has happened with rhinos of Jaldapara in West Bengal. This problem is not an acute one in nature in case of polygamous species like spotted deer because one male can mate with three to four females.

The space should provide suitable niches for various wild animal species.

FACTORS PERTAINING TO WILDLIFE HABITAT

Welfare factors

o These are the factors that are related to the specific components of habitat like food, shelter and water. These factors help to enhance the population structure.

Decimating factors

o These are the factors like starvation, fire, epidemics and unhealthy competition.

WETLAND HABITATS AND THE AVIARY SPECIES

Wetlands have the concerned wetland aviary species that have specialized legs and the legs are equipped with webs that help or facilitating for the better movement on mud or water logged surfaces.

The beaks vary in size and shape, so as to catch the prey species (mostly the fish) from water.

WILDLIFE SANCTUARIES AND NATIONAL PARKS IN INDIA

Wildlife Sanctuaries and National parks existing in this country

Wildlife Sanctuaries and National parks existing in this country (Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Andhra pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharastra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Tamil nadu, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal) should be known with regard to the understanding in a thorough manner about the various wild animal species belonging to multiple species.

MODULE-6 : WILDLIFE RULES, ACT AND ORGANIZATION

This module is designed for students to know about various important acts and rules including different types of organizations pertaining to wildlife conservation and zoo set up.

The objectives are

To reveal about wildlife protection act and different organizations both at national and at international level.

To know about Zoo set up

To understand about various roles played by various units in zoo

WILDLIFE

Wildlife (according to Wildlife Protection Act)

According to this act, “Wildlife” is defined as „any animal, bee, butterflies, crustaceae, fish and moths and aquatic or land vegetation‟. Thus it is to be understood that Wildlife is the term that embraces all life forms that are wild or care themselves.

Important sections are to be understood accordingly by the attending veterinarian also.

ACTS AND RULES RELATED TO ZOO AND WILD ANIMALS

Wildlife Protection Act, 1972

This was amended in the year 1991 and 2002.

According to this act, “Wildlife” is defined as „any animal, bee, butterflies, crustaceae, fish and moths and aquatic or land vegetation‟. Thus it is to be understood that Wildlife is the term that embraces all life forms that are wild or care themselves. There are many important sections of this act which are to be understood.

ACTS

SECTION-18

AND

RULES

RELATED

TO

ZOO

AND

WILD

ANIMALS

Declaration of Sanctuary