IBCN promotes conservation of birds and their habitats through development of a national network of individuals, organizations and the Government.
There are 466 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in India. These encompass the best habitats for not just birds, but other wildlife as well. Many IBAs are also commercially valuable. They may contain valuable natural resources like minerals and fossil fuels, or they might have the potential to generate hydroelectric power. With the rapid spread of urbanisation, IBAs (especially those in the vicinity of urban areas) have acquired high commercial worth in terms of land value alone. The tremendous pressure on bird habitats, from rapid economic development and population growth, presents the greatest challenge to bird conservation in India.
India has one of the most comprehensive wildlife legislation and well developed Protected Area Network (PAN However, there is a disturbing trend towards diluting existing legislation in the face of pressure from development. Weak legislation, compounded by ineffective enforcement, can have disastrous consequences for India’s bird diversity. Thus, there is a need to influence policy and to ensure that conservation of wildlife habitats gets the priority it deserves. To influence policy, information based on sound scientific principles through diligent field and desk based research is indispensable. In addition to this, it is equally important to ensure that this information is available to key decision makers at the right time. The IBA Advocacy Strategy aims to bridge the gap between research and policy and facilitate informed decision making.
IBCN Advocacy Workshop in Jharkhand
A capacity building and network development workshop of the IBCN members in Jharkhand was organized at Hazaribag on December 22, 2013. Ms. Neha Sinha (IBA Advocacy Officer), Dr. Raju Kasambe (Project Manager, IBA Programme) and Dr. S. Subramanya (IBCN State Coordinator, Karnataka), and many forest officers guided the participants of the workshop.
IBCN Advocacy Workshop in Mizoram Capacity Building and Advocacy Workshop was held at Aizawl (Mizoram) on February 21, 2014. The workshop was organized at Pachhunga University College in Aizawl. The workshop was attended by around 60 delegates including the Education Minister of Mizoram and forest officers.
IBCN Advocacy Workshop in Manipur IBCN Advocacy workshop was organized at Keibul Lamjao National Park (Manipur) on February 24, 2014. This workshop was attended by around 30 delegates. Mr. Ibobi Singh, Chief Wildlife Warden, Mizoram guided the delegates and answered the querries raised by them. A meeting with the Naga tribals of the village Leimanai in Chuchandpur district of Manipur was organized on February 23, 2014. Ms. Neha Sinha and Dr. Raju Kasambe held discussions with the tribe about declaring the forests around the village as a Community Conservation Reserve.