Gandhinagar/Junagadh:The population of Asiatic lions in and around Gir forests of Gujarat, has increased by 28.87 pc to 674 as compared to 511 of the last five yearly lion census conducted in 2015, a senior forest official said here on Wednesday.
Chief Conservator of Forests in Junagadh, D T Vasavada said that the 15th edition of the five year lion census was to be held on June 5 and 6 but it was not done due to the Coronavirus situation. In place of it a different method of doing the counting in form of 'Poonam Avalokan' ie, observation of lions on the full moon day was done.
The number of lions was found to be 674 including 412 adults (161 male, 260 female), 94 sub-adults (45 male and 49 female), 137 cubs and 22 of unidenified sex. The lion distribution area, which was spread across 22000 sqkm in five districts last time including Junagadh, Gir Somnath and Amreli (the three districts in which the Gir forest and sanctuary was spread) has also now increased by 36%. Now the lions distribution area has spread to 30000 sq km across nine districts of Saurashtra region.
Notably, the five yearly Lion Census conducted last time in May 2015 had estimated the population of Asiatic lions at 523 (27% up compared to previous census in 2010). The population was 411 in 2010 and 359 in 2005. As per the 2015 census, the population of lions in Junagadh district was 268, Gir Somnath 44, Amreli District 174 (highest increase) and in adjoining Bhavangar District was 37. Of them there were 109 males, 201 females and 213 cubs.
PM hails increase in population of Asiatic Lion, hopes this positive trend continues
New Delhi: Hailing the increase in the population of Asiatic Lion in the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday expressed the hope that this positive trend continues.
In a series of tweets, the PM said, ''two very good news: Population of the majestic Asiatic Lion, living in Gujarat's Gir Forest, is up by almost 29 per cent. Geographically, distribution area is up by 36 per cent . Kudos to the people of Gujarat and all those whose efforts have led to this excellent feat.''
Noting that the Lion population in Gujarat has been steadily rising in the last several years, the PM said that is largely due to community participation, emphasis on technology, wildlife healthcare, proper habitat management and steps to minimise human-lion conflict.
''Over the last several years, the Lion population in Gujarat has been steadily rising. This is powered by community participation, emphasis on technology, wildlife healthcare, proper habitat management and steps to minimise human-lion conflict. Hope this positive trend continues!,''the PM said.(UNI)