Hello India Wilders.
I have been noticing that a huge belt in Maharashtra, from near the Tungareshwar Wildlife Sanctuary to Wada, Jawhar, Khodala has a huge hunting problem. It probably persists in other areas as well, but I haven't been there.
In these areas I have been stunned to find every single villager, repeat, every single villager, carrying catapults in their hands or pockets. (Will post photos from my computer, this was written on my ipad). I have seen village kids scouting trees for whatever bird they can get. I have earlier posted a picture of a village boy proudly standing with a murdered barn owl.
This time in a trip through Chiroti Naka, Kasa, Walwande, Jawhar, I noticed the same catapult and hunting trend. I twice stopped at two different villages and asked the villgers and they said they hunt birds, hares etc. This entire belt is forested, hilly, with many water bodies and cultivation, prime land for birds.
But not a single bird to be seen. In the village of Walwande, I didn't even see crows and bulbuls, common birds near human settlements. This is scary and criminal!
I had written to BNHS and some other friends ip working in conservation (unfortunately in other states).
I think the solution is long term education of villagers to slowly wean them away from hunting, campaigning to make the villagers surrender their catapults and helping them find alternative meat sources (poultry) and rewarding the giving up of hunting.
I have some ideas, but I have never ever worked with the social sector before, and I have very little patience with people. However, if some India Wilders want to join forces, I am willing to come and offer as much help, labour etc as required. I cannot do it alone. Anyone?