Mongabay series: Almost Famous Species

Our Almost Famous Species series features lesser known species from India. It is created in the hope that familiarity will help generate concern and action for under-appreciated species. Through the series, we introduce to you India's gamut of invertebrates, birds and marine flora and fauna, which perhaps don't get as much attention as our more popular big cats and elephants. Stretching from the Nicobar Islands very close to the equator to the Western Himalaya in the north, India covers about 30 degrees of latitude, with a long coastline on its peninsula. The wide geographic extent, topographic features with multiple long mountain ranges and fertile river basins, and the monsoon winds give rise to a plethora of habitats that have been home to a variety of creatures. Yet, any mention of Indian wildlife always conjures up images of charismatic large mammals. We acknowledge that these are interesting; but we want to draw back the curtain on other species that are equally fascinating.

Red-headed vulture eating prey. Photo by Timothy A Gonsalves/Wikimedia Commons.

Measuring the scavenging value of vultures

A new paper evaluating the economic feasibility of vulture conservation in India has found there is “overwhelming support” for the captive breeding and release of Gyps vultures into safe zones…
Red-headed vulture eating prey. Photo by Timothy A Gonsalves/Wikimedia Commons.

The dietary habits of endangered vultures

A study examining the dietary habits of endangered vultures in India reveals a significant reliance on domestic ungulates, except in south India where vultures predominantly consume wild carcasses, shedding light…
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