Genetic rescue in Ranthambore National Park

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Source-This post on Genetic rescue in Ranthambore National Park is based on the article “Conservation not enough for the highly inbred Ranthambore tigers — they require genetic rescue” published in “DownToEarth” on 18th March 2024.

Why in the News?

Recently, during a study, genetic rescue was suggested as a strategy to preserve the tiger population in Ranthambore National Park.

What is Genetic rescue?

Genetic rescue
Source- revive & restore

1. About:
Genetic rescue is the process of increasing population growth. This is done by introducing new genetic diversity through the migration of individuals into another small population, a process known as gene flow.
b. In practice, wildlife managers take individuals from a larger, healthier population and bring them to a smaller one to introduce new variation and aid in population growth.

2. Aim– This strategy aims to reduce genetic problems, lower extinction risks, and improve the survival of endangered species and populations.

3. Applications- It is commonly used in conservation biology to counteract inbreeding depression. This occurs when closely related individuals mate within a population, resulting in reduced success in reproduction and offspring viability.

4. Impacts:
Genetic rescue can have positive or negative effects, influenced by factors such as the extent and duration of gene flow, as well as genetic and non-genetic factors that impact population dynamics.
b. Moving animals around can pose risks, which is why it’s usually considered a final option.

About Ranthambore National Park

Location1. It is located in Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan.
2. It is located at the junction of the Aravali and Vindhya hill ranges.
History1. Ranthambore National Park started as Sawai Madhopur Game Sanctuary in 1955 by the Indian Government.
2. It became a Project Tiger reserve in 1973.
3. Ranthambore was designated as a national park in 1980.
RiverThe park is bounded to the north by the Banas River and to the south by the Chambal River.
Connected wildlife sanctuaryKailadevi Wildlife Sanctuary and Sawai Mansingh Wildlife Sanctuary are connected to the core of Ranthambore NP by narrow corridors, forming part of the Tiger Reserve.
VegetationMixed Deciduous type
Flora1. The most prevalent plant species in Ranthambore National Park is the “Dhok,” scientifically known as Anogeissus pendula.
2. Other plant species include Banyan (Ficus bengalensis), Pipal (Ficus religiosa) and Neem (Azadirachta indiaca), Babul (Accasia nilotica), Gum (Sterculia urens) etc.
Fauna1. Tigers, leopards, striped hyenas, common or hanuman langurs, rhesus macaques, jackals, jungle cats, caracals, blackbuck, etc.
2. It is also home to more than 270 bird species, such as the crested serpent eagle, painted francolin, and Indian paradise flycatcher.

UPSC Syllabus- Environment 

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