Sunday, October 6, 2019

Activity Update August 2019: Tadoba

Ashtha - Villagers attend our meeting on human-wildlife conflict

 Khutwanda - Students learn about wildlife identification
through an interactive nature game

Kondegaon- Students observe birds and learn about
invasive species of plants that harm the local ecosystem
Mudholi - Our colleague Kishor speaks to villagers
about stall feeding and fodder management

Mudholi - Our team gives information to villagers
 about vocational training programmes

Wadala - Our colleague Kishor speaks about local wildlife
and nature to village school students

Wadala - Our team conducts a socio-economic survey of villagers
Wadala - Villagers attend our awareness programme
on managing human-wildlife conflict








Team: 
Conservation Officer:  Ajay Poddar
Field Assistant:  Kishor Dudhbarai
Highlights of the month: (See Table 1)
  • 14 awareness programs on man-animal conflict - 508 villagers and students attended
  • 3 anti-plastic and cleanliness programs to prevent man- animal conflict - 130 villagers participated
  • 4 awareness programs on livestock management to reduce grazing pressure on forests - 76 villagers participated
  • 11 Environment education progammes - 542 students attended
  • 3 Nature club activities - nature and bird watching trail, interactive nature games - 53 students participated 
  • 4 women’s Self-Help Group meetings were organised - 64members attended 
  • 9 Village Eco-Development Committee meetings were organised - 176 members attended


During August, we organised several meetings with villagers focusing on reducing human-animal conflict. In order to spread awareness, we spoke to the community members about potential threats and the danger of venturing into the forest areas for fuel wood, mahua, tendu collection etc. As the Tadoba area has a good tiger breeding population and other large carnivores, many encounters turn fatal, often leading to retaliatory killing of wildlife by villagers. Resolving issues like garbage dumps around villages, cattle grazing, minor forest produce (MFP) collection and unemployment, help in reducing man-animal confrontation.  

Wild herbivores like blue bulls, spotted deer, sambar deer and wild boar also pose threats to villagers by raiding crops, damaging property and sometimes attacking farmers. Farmers suffer hefty losses in these depredations. Farmers were told to maximise the use of solar-powered fencing. Our team is preparing a list of farmers who are willing to set up solar-powered fencing around their farms.  508 villagers attended these meetings. 

We organised cleanliness and anti-plastic programs with villagers of Katwal, Khutwanda and Bhamdeli. Programs were organised in order to sanitise the area around villages, as garbage spillover and food leftovers lure wildlife into villages and cause man-animal conflict. We collected over 7 kilograms of plastic litter through public participation (voluntary work project).  130 villagers including members of women’s SHGs and children volunteered for these activities. 

We also organised meetings with cattle owners and farmers on livestock management. Attendees were informed about stall feeding, cattle sheds and fodder units through success stories from the villages in Nagpur and Wardha districts. Post monsoon, a fodder plantation drive will take place with the help of the Forest Department near Mudholi village. Also, a cattle castration program will be organised in Khutwanda, Kondegaon and Katwal in October.  76 cattle owners and farmers attended the meetings.

Environment Education programs (See Table 2) 

During August, we organised environment education  programs in Ashtha, Wadala, Kondegaon, Katwal Mudholi, Sitarampeth, Bhamdeli, Moharli, Agarzari, Adegaon, Udiyatola, Dewada, Junona and Khutwanda villages. We  organised these programs with students and teachers in order to make them aware of the importance of biodiversity and conservation. We taught them about nature and wildlife’s value through interactive sessions and various nature games.  595 students participated in the programs. 

Employment Cell (See Table 3)

We organised 9 Village Eco-Development Committee (VEDC) meetings and 4 Self-Help Group (SHG) meetings, focusing on alternative livelihoods which will reduce dependence on the forests that leads to man-animal conflict and degradation of forests.  240 villagers attended these meetings. 

In the SHG meetings, we discussed several livelihood related issues. We also formed groups of interested members who are willing to be trained in making paper bags and in embroidery. The training will be provided to these members in order to improve their earnings and reduce their dependency on forests.  64 members attended these meetings.  

In the VEDC meetings, we discussed plantation to be done in the buffer zone, collection and distribution of saplings from the Forest Department. We also focused on increasing usage of solar-powered fencing in farm lands to prevent conflict with wildlife and to reduce the incidence of wild animals being electrocuted by electrified fencing. We also discussed and explained short- and long-term benefits of fodder plantation. We discussed the increasing numbers of man-animal confrontations in and around Moharli and how to prevent this by adopting cattle sheds and stall feeding for their cattle, which often fall prey to carnivores around the area. 176 villagers attended these meetings. 

We organised youth empowerment and livelihood awareness sessions in Kudesawli village for unemployed young villagers from corridor villages of the proposed Kanargaon Wildlife Sanctuary.  We discussed various livelihood issues and job schemes that can benefit those forest dwellers. We formed a social media group to discuss and share thoughts about the topic.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Activity Update August 2019: Pench Maharashtra

Chargaon - Students at our environment education program
Ghatpendhari - Villagers join Forest Department staff in a patrol
Khapa - Dilip conducts environment education programme
in the village school
Khapa - Villagers attend meeting to discuss conservation and livelihood issues

 Khapa - Villagers on patrol in the nearby jungle
Sawara - Students learn computer skills from Ms Sita Uikey,
a resident of the village

Suwardhara - Our volunteers clear wild growth around a soak pit

Wagholi - Dilip talks to villagers about alternative livelihoods














Team: Bandu Uikey – Assistant Conservation Officer
             Dilip Lanjewar, Balkrishna Bagmare – Field assistants


Highlights (See Table 1)
  • Organised 4 foot patrols along with young villagers and Forest department - 21 villagers volunteered
  • Organised 3 meetings on human-wildlife conflict - 55 villagers present
  • Organised 4 awareness rallies with conservation message - 250 villagers participated
  • Organised awareness program on tackling snake bites in Sawara 
  • 5 villagers participated in shramdaan to clean area near soak pit
  • Helped 3 unemployed young villagers get employment 
  • 16 environment education programs in schools - 386 students participated

On 11 August, Dilip Lanjewar organised a forest patrol in which 5 villagers from Khapa village took part. The team accompanied Forest Department staff on a foot patrol to spot any illegal activity like placing of snares, electrocution traps, illegal tree felling or illegal grazing in the forest adjoining the village. During the patrol, the team did not come across any such illegal activity. The team spotted pug marks and scat of a leopard close to the village. Further enquiry with villagers revealed recent encounters with a male leopard. 

The team made villagers aware about the leopard’s presence in the area and have requested the villagers to avoid venturing into the forest. They have also asked the villagers to ensure that the cattle are tied in an enclosure, and to avoid grazing in the forest, in order to prevent any conflict situation. Dilip also informed the concerned Range Forest Officer who ensured regular monitoring in the area.

A similar patrol was carried out in Dhawlapur beat on 18 August by Balkrishna along with 5 villagers from Dhawlapur and one Forest Guard. No illegal activity or suspicious activity was reported by the team.

On 30 August, our team encouraged villagers to join Forest Department staff on special patrols. On this day the ‘Pola’ festival is celebrated by forest-dwelling communities and there are possibilities of villagers hunting wildlife for fresh meat to celebrate the festival. In order to prevent such incidents, Bandu Uikey along with 3 villagers of Ghatpendari joined 5 Forest Department staff members on a foot patrol in the west Ghatpendari beat. On the same day, Balkrishna along with 4 villagers from Chargaon joined the Forest Department staff on a night patrol. The teams did not witness any illegal activity during their patrols.

On 11 August, Dilip organised a meeting with villagers of Khapa. 30 villagers, including members of the Village Eco-Development Committee (VEDC) and Vyaghra Mitra Mandal, were present. During the meeting Dilip told the villagers that in order to prevent and reduce conflict cases with wildlife, the villagers need to assist Forest Department staff by providing information. He also told the members of VEDC and Vyaghra Mitra Mandal to participate in more forest patrols. Compensation schemes for crop and cattle depredation by wildlife were also discussed. Dilip urged villagers to file for compensation rather that resorting to illegal retaliatory practices like electrocution or poisoning. Dilip also provided information about current government agricultural schemes.

A similar meeting was held in Sawara village on 10 August and in Wagholi village on 16 August. 15 villagers from Sawara and 10 villagers from Wagholi participated in the meetings.

On 29 August, Balkrishna organised a voluntary work program to clean the area near a soak pit in Suwardhara. During the monsoon season, a lot of organic waste had got accumulated due to water- logging and growth of weeds around the soak pit. Villagers had reported spotting snakes in the area as well. In order to avoid snake-bites and to prevent spread of diseases, Balkrishna along with 5 villagers removed weeds and cleaned the trash in and around the soak pit. 

On 15 August, on India’s Independence Day, Dilip and Balkrishna organised awareness rallies with conservation messages in Ghoti and Chargaon. In Ghoti village, 100 students of Zilla Parishad Upper Primary school, VEDC members and Forest Department staff walked in a procession through the village. The students chanted slogans to spread awareness about the ill effects of deforestation, biodiversity loss and climate change. They also urged villagers to protect forests. In Chargaon, 47 villagers took part in the rally.


On 5 August, Dilip organised an awareness program on snakes for villagers and students of Sawara village. Dilip explained the importance of snakes in the ecosystem. He explained that the snakes help keep a check on populations of animals which can cause huge losses to agricultural produce, and hence are farmers’ friends. He further taught the villagers to identify venomous and non-venomous snakes. He cautioned villagers against falling prey to superstitions and asked them to provide urgent medical aid to any snake-bite victim. Dilip further explained to the villagers that they should not indulge in trafficking of snakes which is a punishable offence. 45 students and villagers were present during the program.


On 1 August, Dilip along with 15 students from Ghoti School planted 15 saplings of local tree species. Saplings were planted in the premises of the village Anganwadi (child care) centre. Dilip explained to the students that if the survival of the saplings is ensured through regular care, the trees will attract numerous birds and bees. The trees will also help improve the aesthetic value of the premises. The students have committed to the responsibility of watering these saplings during the summer season to ensure that the saplings survive. The Anganwadi centre staff have also assured our team that they will take care of the saplings. 

Education Program (See Table 2)

In August, Dilip organised classroom programs in schools of 11 villages of buffer area of Pench Tiger Reserve. During these sessions, Dilip taught students about snake identification and snake bite prevention. Dilip also explained to the students that in August, the Pola festival is celebrated during which people engage in hunting of wildlife for fresh meat. He asked students to shun such practices and inform Forest Department staff about such illegal activities. He also urged them to avoid the use of palash (Flame of the Forest) twigs, a tradition being practiced by communities. He told the students that numerous palash trees are cut down due to this practice, leading to degradation of forests and ecosystems.

Balkrishna organised similar interactive sessions in 5 schools. 


386 students were present during these sessions. 

Employment Cell (See Table 3)

In August, our staff assisted one unemployed young villager from Kadbikheda and two unemployed young villagers from Ghatpendari village to get employment as temporary labourers with the Forest Department. They will be earning 9,300/- rupees per month for the next 3 months and will be assisting Forest Department staff in protection activities. 


Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Activity Update August 2019: Navegaon-Nagzira

 Koylari - Students of Ashram School plant saplings 

 Kurhadi - Our colleague Mukund teaches students
to make eco-friendly Ganesh idols

 Kurhadi - Students with their eco-friendly Ganesh idols 
Mangezari - Anti-plastic and garbage management programme

Wadegaon - Our team teaches students of the village school
to make eco-friendly Ganesh idols




THE FULL REPORT

Team: 

Mukund Dhurve – Assistant Conservation Officer

Highlights

  • Joined Forest Department staff on foot patrols on 4 occasions
  • 4 shramdaan programs to clean area next to hand pumps
  • 4 anti-plastic and garbage management programs 
  • 35 saplings planted in 2 programs -a total of 179 students participated
  • Organised 4 environment education programs - 426 students present

Conservation (See Table 1)

Our team organised 4 community assistance programs on August 1, 07, 14and 18 to clear areas around hand pumps at Balapur, Kodebarra, Mangezari, and Chorkhamara. Unemployed young villagers from Mangezari participated in the programs which were led by Mukund. 

(Details of the programs are provided in the table above)


Water had spilled over while people drew from the hand pumps and had stagnated, leading to proliferation of mosquitoes and insects. Our teams cleared the area, removing scum and organic growth and dug canals to drain away the water.

Our team joined the Forest Department in day and night patrols in Compartment No. 56, and on the paths linking Mangezari to Jindatola, Mangezari to Govindtola and Mangezari to Bagadband.  Besides our staff, volunteers from a youth club at Mangezari also joined in the patrols. The youth club was set up with our assistance and is mentored by our Assistant Conservation Officer Mukund Dhurve.


During the month, our team organised 4 anti-plastic programs and garbage management to clean polythene/plastic litter from villages. The programs were organised on August 1, 7, 14 and 18, at Balapur, Kodebarra, Mangezari and Chorkhamara villages respectively. 

Plastic litter is sometimes consumed by wild animals, causing harm to wildlife. Untended garbage sometimes lures wild animals into the village in search of food, raising the scope for human-wildlife conflict. It is, therefore, important to collect plastic litter and manage garbage properly. 

Mukund organised the programs which were attended by villagers and Village Eco-Development Committee (VEDC) members. The plastic litter has been kept in our Mangezari office and will be sent to Tiroda for recycling. 

Education (Table 2)


There were 6 education programs in August 2019.



Thursday, August 22, 2019

Activity Update July 2019: Pench-Bor Corridor

Roshan Dhawangale from Telgaon completes hospitality training.
He got a job at Ramoji Film City, Hyderabad

Telgaon - Anil Gaikwad at the proposed site
for his welding and fabrication unit
Telgaon - Roshan Gaydhane prepares site for a vermi-compost unit.






















































Team:
Mandar Pingle - Conservation Officer

Highlights
  • One young villager successfully completed hospitality training and got employment
  • Identified candidate to set up welding and fabrication unit
  • Identified candidate for starting a flour mill unit
  • Information regarding various livelihood options given to villagers

Activity

On July 3, Roshan Dhawangale, an unemployed young villager from Telgaon village, successfully completed a two-month training program in hospitality, conducted by Pratham Arora Centre for Education (PACE) at Sillari, Pench Tiger Reserve. Roshan was identified for the training program by Satpuda Foundation in May this year and we assisted him in applying and preparing for the program. 

Upon completion of the program, Roshan has got a job in the prestigious Ramoji Film City in Hyderabad. Roshan will be working with the room service department of Sitara Hotel at Ramoji Film City. He will be earning a monthly salary of Rs 8,000, with benefits including provident fund and medical insurance, along with lodging and food facilities. 

In July, Satpuda Foundation identified a candidate for starting a welding and fabrication unit as part of our alternate livelihoods initiative. Anil Gaikwad, an unemployed young villager from Telgaon, was identified for starting the unit. He is currently helping his brother run a small tea and snacks shop in his village. Anil is interested in starting the unit in his village with assistance from Satpuda Foundation. He has already prepared a small building in which he plans to start the welding and fabrication unit.

In July, we identified a candidate to start a flour mill unit. Dnyaneshwar Sarve, a young villager from Umari village, is currently working as an auto rickshaw driver. He has rented the auto rickshaw and hence it is difficult for him to earn sufficient income. He is planning to start the flour mill unit in his village in order to improve his earnings. 


In July, we gave information about various livelihood options to villagers from Umari, Telgaon, Temburdoh and Lohgad. Livelihood options such as small-scale poultry farming, mushroom cultivation and information on how starting a micro-enterprise can help improve earning potential was explained to the villagers. Information regarding job opportunity as security guards at Pune offered by Checkmate Servicers Pvt Ltd was also given to young villagers.


Activity Update July 2019: Navegaon-Nagzira

Highlights:


Day patrol in Comp. No. 56

Bolunda - Students are briefed about the benefits of conservation

Kurhadi - Teachers and students participate in our plantation drive 

Mangezari - Students plant saplings in our plantation drive

Mangezari - Students pose during our 'Tiger Day' celebration


Mangezari - Students set off on conservation awareness rally
on Global Tiger Day




























THE FULL REPORT

Team: 
Mukund Dhurve – Assistant Conservation Officer

Highlights (See Table 1)

  • Joined Forest Department staff on foot patrols on 3 occasions
  • 5 voluntary work programs to clean area next to hand pumps
  • 5 anti-plastic programs 
  • Organised programs to dig 5 compost pits 
  • Assisted 2 young villagers in joining hospitality training program at PACE Academy, Sillari
  • Organised 7 plantation programs – 135 saplings planted
  • Organised 2 environment education programs;  320 students present
  • Celebrated World Tiger Day - 73 students and EDC members participated

Our team organised 5 community assistance programs on July 14, 16, 17, 21 and 25 to clear areas around hand pumps at Mangezari, Sodlagondi, Chorkhamara, Umarzari and Jindatola. Unemployed young villagers from Mangezari participated in the programs, led by Mukund. 


Water had spilled over while people drew from the hand pumps, and had stagnated, leading to proliferation of mosquitoes and insects. Our teams cleared the area, removing scum and organic growth and dug canals to drain away the water.

Our team joined the Forest Department in day and night patrols in Compartment No. 56 and on the paths linking Mangezari to Kodebarra and Mangezari to Jindatola. Besides our staff, volunteers from a youth club at Mangezari also joined in the patrols. The youth club was set up with our assistance and is mentored by our Assistant Conservation Officer Mukund Dhurve.

During the month, our team organised 5 anti-plastic programs to clean polythene/plastic litter from villages. The programs were organised on July 14, 16, 17, 21 and 25 at Mangezari, Sodlagondi, Chorkhamara, Umarzari and Jindatola villages respectively. Mukund organised the programs. They were attended by villagers including Village Eco-Development Committee (VEDC) members. The plastic litter has been kept in our Mangezari office and will be sent to Tiroda for recycling. 

On 29 July, we celebrated World Tiger Day at Zilla Parishad Primary School (ZPPS), Mangezari. 73 students, VEDC members and Forest Department staff were present. Addressing the gathering, Mukund gave information about tigers and their habitat, and the need to conserve the big cat.

In July, Hemraj Salam, a marginal farmer from Asalpani, prepared a compost pit through a voluntary work project. Earlier in May we had provided information to farmers about the benefits of preparing compost pits and using organic compost instead of chemical fertilisers. He voluntarily prepared the compost pit on his farm under the guidance of Mukund Dhurve. Similarly, 4 more compost pits were prepared in Asalpani and Bagadband villages.

Education (See Table 2)

There were 9 education programs in July 2019.

Employment Cell Training activities (See Table 3)

In July we helped 2 young villagers attend a hospitality training program organised by Pratham Arora Center for Education (PACE) and funded by Pench Tiger Conservation Foundation at Sillari. 


Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Activity Update July 2019: Tadoba

Highlights:


Adegaon - Students participate in our plantation drive
 and plant saplings in their school premises
Ashtha - Global Tiger Day 2019 

 Ashtha - Kishor conducts an environment education programme
 in the village school
Ashtha - Global Tiger Day 2019 -
Students learn about tiger habitat and its conservation

Dewada - Students participate in a cleanliness drive 
Junona - Kishor briefs members of the women's SHG
about alternative livelihood options


Katwal - Global Tiger Day 2019 - Students participate
in an awareness rally on tiger conservation
Katwal - Teachers and students participate in our cleanliness drive

Khutwanda - Students observe wetland birds during a nature trail 

Khutwanda - Volunteers plant saplings in our plantation drive

Kudesawli - Awareness meeting with unemployed villagers
in the corridor, on alternative livelihood options 

Mudholi - Students of nature club 'Gaur' learn to identify animals
 through a nature game 

Mudholi - Villagers plant saplings during our plantation drive



















THE FULL REPORT

Team: 
Conservation Officer: Mr. Ajay Poddar
Field Assistant: Mr. Kishor Dudhbarai

Highlights of the month: (Table 1)

  • 2 livelihood awareness sessions in corridor villages - 58 unemployed young villagers attended
  • 2 anti-plastic and bore well cleaning programs to prevent man-animal conflict - 79 villagers participated 
  • 4 plantation programs - 840 saplings planted - 52 villagers participated
  • 4 environment education programs - 202 students attended 
  • 2 Nature club activities/interactive nature games- 53 students participated 
  • 5 women’s SHG meetings were organised - 80 members attended 
  • 7 VEDC meetings were organised - 128 members attended
  • Global Tiger Day 2019 celebration - 170 students participated 
On July 5th and 22nd, we organised cleanliness and anti-plastic programs with villagers of Katwal and Adegaon. Programs were organised in order to sanitise the area around villages, as food litter sometimes leads wildlife to venture into the village and causes human-animal conflict. We collected over 5 kilograms of plastic litter through public participation (Shramdaan). 79 villagers including members of women’s (self-help groups) SHGs, and children, volunteered for these activities. 


On July 10th, 13th, 15th and 20th, we organised plantation drives with villagers of Mudholi, Katwal, Kondegaon and Khutwanda. Villagers planted 840 saplings of native tree species through voluntary work project. 52 villagers participated. 

Education Program (See Table 2)

During July, we visited and organised environment education  programs in Ashtha, Kondegaon, Katwal Mudholi and Khutwanda villages to promote awareness about the importance of biodiversity and conservation. We spoke to the students about nature and taught them about the importance of wildlife through interactive sessions and various nature games. 255 students participated in the programs. 

Students of the Nature club 'Gaur' from Mudholi and 'Wagh' from Kondegaon village participated in interactive nature education games and learnt about rain water harvesting and conservation. 

Events
Global Tiger Day 2019
 On July 29th, Satpuda Foundation celebrated GLOBAL TIGER DAY 2019 in Ashtha and Katwal villages in the buffer area of Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserve. The goal of Tiger Day is to promote the protection of tigers. In a bid to create greater public awareness about tiger conservation, our team organised several programs and activities with school students and the villagers.

Our team of Ajay Poddar and Kishor Dudhbarai organised class room lectures and PowerPoint presentations to spread the message to conserve forest habitat in order to protect tigers. Our team also organised an awareness rally and nature games. During the rally, students sported tiger masks made by themselves and chanted tiger conservation slogans while marching through their village. Forest Department officials and school teachers were also present on the occasion.

Employment Cell (See Table 3)

We organised 7 Village Eco-Development Committee (VEDC) meetings and 5 self-help group (SHG) meetings, focusing on alternative livelihoods which would reduce dependence on the forests that leads to man-animal conflict and degradation of forests. A total of 208 villagers attended these meetings and shared their thoughts. 

In the SHG meetings, we discussed several livelihood related issues. We also formed groups of interested members who are willing to take up paper-bag making and embroidery. These groups will be provided with relevant training. A total of 80 members attended these meetings.  

In the VEDC meetings, we discussed about plantation to be done in the buffer; and collection and distribution of saplings. We also focused on increasing the usage of solar-powered fencing in farm lands to prevent conflict with wildlife. We also discussed and explained short- and long-term benefits of fodder plantation. We also discussed about increasing man-animal confrontation in and around Moharli and how to prevent this by adopting cattle sheds and stall feeding for their cattle, which sometimes fall prey to medium and large carnivores around the area. A total of 128 villagers attended these meetings. 

We also organised youth empowerment and livelihood awareness sessions in Kudesawli village for unemployed young villagers from corridor villages of the proposed Kanargaon Wildlife Sanctuary.  We discussed various livelihood issues and job schemes that can benefit those forest dwellers. We also formed a social media group to discuss and share thoughts on the topic. 58 unemployed young villagers from Tohagaon, Kanargaon, Bamni and Chiwanda villages attended. The Honorary wildlife warden of Gadchiroli district Mr. Uday Patel and president of the organisation Social Action and Rural Development, Chandrapur (SARD) Mr. Prakash Kamde were also present.