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Recent changes in populations of Critically Endangered Gyps vultures in India

  • VIBHU PRAKASH (a1), TOBY H. GALLIGAN (a2), SOUMYA S. CHAKRABORTY (a1), RUCHI DAVE (a1), MANDAR D. KULKARNI (a1), NIKITA PRAKASH (a1), ROHAN N. SHRINGARPURE (a1), SACHIN P. RANADE (a1) and RHYS E. GREEN (a3)...
Summary

Populations of the White-rumped Vulture Gyps bengalensis, Indian Vulture G. indicus and Slender-billed Vulture G. tenuirostris declined rapidly during the mid-1990s all over their ranges in the Indian subcontinent because of poisoning due to veterinary use of the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac. This paper reports results from the latest in a series of road transect surveys conducted across northern, central, western and north-eastern India since the early 1990s. Results from the seven comparable surveys now available were analysed to estimate recent population trends. Populations of all three species of vulture remained at a low level. The previously rapid decline of White-rumped Vulture has slowed and may have reversed since the ban on veterinary use of diclofenac in India in 2006. A few thousand of this species, possibly up to the low tens of thousands, remained in India in 2015. The population of Indian Vulture continued to decline, though probably at a much slower rate than in the 1990s. This remains the most numerous of the three species in India with about 12,000 individuals in 2015 and a confidence interval ranging from a few thousands to a few tens of thousands. The trend in the rarest species, Slender-billed Vulture, which probably numbers not much more than 1,000 individuals in India, cannot be determined reliably.

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Corresponding author
*Author for correspondence; e-mail: reg29@cam.ac.uk
References
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Bird Conservation International
  • ISSN: 0959-2709
  • EISSN: 1474-0001
  • URL: /core/journals/bird-conservation-international
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