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No hunting policy threatens Andamans.

A NO hunting policy is proving to be a major cause of ecological as well as economic damage to a number of areas in India. The latest area facing the threat is the pristine Andaman Islands.

Remote sensing images have shown a drastic loss of vegetation cover over Andaman Islands. Thanks to invasive species such as elephants and deers.

India is one of the few countries in the world which has no policy on invasive species. By definition, invasive species are the animals or plants which are introduced accidentally to a place where they are not found and cause economic and environmental damage.

" Because of the country- wide ban on hunting, the problem has become much bigger," Dr Rauf Ali, Foundation for Ecological Research, Advocacy and Learning, Puducherry, said.

Ali along with other scientists from his institute and Juniata College, Pennsylvania has carried out a research at four sites on Andaman Islands -- Little Andaman, Interview Island, MG Marine Park and Jarawa Reserve.

Scientists analysed changes across the sites which have different combinations of chital and elephants which have been introduced in the islands.

Satellite images showed that Little Andaman, with none of these animals, had the least degradation while Interview Island, with both the species, had the maximum degradation.

MG Marine Park and Jarawa Reserve with only chital, have been degraded to a level which is more that Little Andaman and less than Interview Island.

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Publication:Mail Today (New Delhi, India)
Date:Aug 11, 2013
Words:251
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