Corridors for Carnivores: An Assessment in Sahyadri- Konkan Area

Large carnivores are crucial in maintaining ecosystems due to a top-down control on many species. However, most large carnivores are threatened today due to a multitude of factors and most habitats are rapidly becoming fragmented and isolated. Connectivity between habitats is crucial to maintain viable populations of large carnivores in the future. This project aims to identify critical linkages in connectivity for large carnivores in the Sahyadri-Konkan corridor, part of the northern Western Ghats. The objective is to incorporate the importance of corridors, for their persistence, in regional policy and protected area management. We also aim to involve stakeholders as part of 'conservation networks' to maintain and enhance functional connectivity for large carnivores. This project focuses on four large carnivores found in the region- the tiger (Panthera tigris), Asiatic wild dog (Cuon alpinus), sloth bear (Melursus ursinus), and the leopard (Panthera pardus). The tiger and Asiatic wild dog are Endangered, the sloth bear is Vulnerable, and the leopard is Near Threatened according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.

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