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Old 09-15-2015, 09:51 AM   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Chicago Illinois USA
Default Why Cities Need Wildlife Nature

Urban development, some understanding of why room for diversity and habitat must be taken into account as cities swell.


Pia Sethi has a PhD in ecology from the University of Illinois, and is currently a Research Fellow in the Forestry and Biodiversity Group of TERI.

Why cities need wildlife nature

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The biodiversity of cities, however, face extensive threats, loss of habitats to reclamation or urban development, road kills, straying of animals into city centres or even hunting and poaching. City frontiers expand inexorably into surrounding rural and wilderness landscapes causing extensive changes to forests, wilderness, agriculture and other fringe ecosystems. The Basai wetlands on the outskirts of Delhi, for example, consisting of inundated agricultural fields once teeming with thousands of migratory waterfowl such as greylag (Anser anser) and bar-headed (Anser indicus) geese or Northern lapwings (Vanellus vanellus) in abundance, a virtual Mecca for all birders visiting Delhi, have now been sold for housing development.
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Lack of knowledge is another threat-I have come across numerous instances of people slaughtering monitor lizards (and of course snakes) wrongly believing them to be venomous.
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Nevertheless, wetlands are increasingly being valued for the important ecosystem services they provide. Examples of urban managed wetlands are the East Kolkata wetlands that represent the largest assemblage of sewage-fed fisheries in the world. These wetlands provide food and livelihood security to 0.2million of the poorest peri-urban populations and provide up to 80% of the fish and 60% of the agriculture to the city of Kolkata. These wetlands are now considered to be an integral part of the urban infrastructure and an East Kolkata Wetland Authority has been set up for their conservation and management.
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