Photo by Dhritiman Mukherjee
Using the Tiger as a metaphor for all of nature, Wildlife Conservation Trust (WCT) was envisioned to preserve and protect India’s rich natural heritage. Currently, WCT works in and around 160 Protected Areas across 23 states in the country covering 82% of India’s 50 tiger reserves, 21% of the 769 Protected Areas and impacting a population base of approximately 3.5 million people. WCT works towards the mitigation of anthropogenic pressures through a robust and tested 360 degree approach with a firm belief in landscape-level conservation of both wildlife and their habitats, sustainably factoring in the needs of people dependent on these forests.
The communities living in and around India’s forests depend heavily on forest produce to supplement their income. We help impart vocational training to young people and co-ordinate with over 100 job providers to find them gainful employment, thereby reducing their dependency and negative impact on forests.
We understand the value of education to a child’s future and work extensively with government schools in forests by building the capacity of teachers, providing infrastructural support and creating alternative avenues for learning.
Realising that these remotely-located communities lack access to quality healthcare, we conduct health camps, providing relief to both villagers and forest department staff.
Our efforts in these three arenas are greatly complimented by our protection initiatives. We work closely with forest departments to ensure that they have the best equipment and training to carry out their duties. In a first of its kind initiative, we provided multi-utility rescue vehicles to parks to tackle man-animal conflict and also equipped 2,100 Anti-poaching Camps in over 60 parks. Our team has imparted enforcement training to over 8,700 staff and continues to conduct sessions in forest institutes. Above all we conduct scientific research to push for more robust wildlife management policies.
- In less than a decade, we have reached 160 protected areas through our conservation efforts.
- The only non-governmental organisation conducting large scale tiger population estimation in wildlife corridors and habitats outside protected areas.
- WCT, plays a pivotal role as a member to :
- The advisory board, Global Tiger Forum
- The advisory board, National Tiger Conservation Authority
- State Boards of Wildlife- Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan
- Executive Committee of the Madhya Pradesh Tiger Foundation Society
- One of the four non-governmental organisations entrusted with the All India Tiger Population estimation exercise.
- Over 11500 forest staff trained in effectively implementing the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972 through our wildlife law enforcement training exercises.
- WCT, highlighted the effects of linear infrastructures cutting across wildlife habitats and corridors through the citizen science project, ‘RoadKills’.
- WCT helps impart quality education to over 82000 children from 728 schools in and around the buffer areas of 11 tiger reserves.
- ‘Caring for Conservators’ our health programme for the frontline forest staff reaches over 16000 forest guards and watchers through preventive health assessments.
- Effectively trained over 1100 forest staff in Trauma Management to enhance their safety in the field.
WCT’s President Dr. Anish Andheria explains the use of baffle board to officials in the Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve.
Officials in Bandhavgarh understand the components of the first aid kit in an RRU.
Officials at Anamalai Tiger Reserve with their RRU.
A sloth bear with her two cubs clinging to her back walks past a camera trap.
Our camera traps picks up a multitude of species including a porcupine.
RRUs contain all the equipment forest staff need in an emergency.
Each RRU comprises of a modified 4WD vehicle and three motorcycles.
Panna forest guards are trained in using an RRU.
A WCT RRU donated to Pench Tiger Reserve, Madhya Pradesh.
Officials from Pench, Maharashtra learn how to put up the tents included in an RRU.
Officials in Ranthambore are briefed about the megaphone included in an RRU to help during crowd control.
RRUs also include a range of personal equipment for forest guards such as backpacks, rain and winter gear and sturdy shoes.
The personal equipment included in an RRU allows officials to weather extreme conditions during conflict situations.
RRU is handed over to officials at Sanjay Dubri Tiger Reserve, Madhya Pradesh.
An RRU includes essential pieces of equipment such as baffle boards, walkie-talkies and helmets.
Our vehicles are equipped with specially designed lightweight carnivore trap cages to minimise injury to wild animals during rescue operations.
A Rapid Response Boat was donated to the Sunderbans Tiger Reserve, West Bengal to help officials patrol the waterways more effectively.
A Nilgai or Blue Bull investigates a Rapid Response Unit at Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve.
A chinkara is photographed mid leap on a WCT camera trap.
A trio of wolves trooped past a WCT camera trap, one decided to stop and take a closer look.
Two leopards spotted on a WCT camera trap.
Sometimes the camera traps pick up the most incredible natural history moments. India’s national bird caught on a WCT camera.
A bonnet macaque peers into a WCT camera trap set up in the forest.
WCT researchers were thrilled to spot two jackals among the images collected from our camera traps.
A tiger in Pench photographed on a WCT camera trap.
A tiger strolls past a WCT camera trap. We are using these cameras to count tigers in and around Protected Areas.
WCT researchers set up a camera trap. A key component of our work is training forest officials in camera trapping techniques.
A WCT team member mimics a tiger to make sure that the cameras are positioned at the right height.
The WCT team spends time with forest officials, explaining how the camera trap works.
WCT’s Milind Pariwakam positions a camera trap on a tree.
Officials at the Anamalai Tiger Reserve pose outside their newly equipped APC.
WCT designed a pilot APC that is solar-powered, has water harvesting facility, an inbuilt efficient cooking stove, lot of natural light and naturally-insulating bricks. It is environmentally-friendly and cost-effective.
WCT donated reverse osmosis units to APCs so that officials had access to clean water.
An APC-cum-solar shed built with WCT support in Bandipur Tiger Reserve.
An official in Kanha tests the water from a filter donated by WCT.
A mahout in Kanha fills a glass of water from a filtration unit donated by WCT to ensure access to safe water.
WCT donates small items such as trunks, chairs and mattresses to APCs so that officials can live comfortably.
APCs in Kanha received Solar Integrated Systems so that officials could charge small pieces of equipment like mobile phones.
WCT invested in designing special Solar Integrated Systems and over 2000 units have been installed in APCs across India.
In Chulkati in the Sunderbans Biosphere Reserve, forest staff requird a base station. Due to its remoteness, the costs were extremely high. WCT stepped in and today, the camp allows staff to patrol 200 sq. km. of forest earlier inaccessible to them.
Officials in Tadoba understand how to use and maintain the Solar Integrated Systems donated to them by WCT.
An APC in Umred equipped by WCT.
First-aid kits are distributed to officials at the Bhadra Tiger Reserve.
Officials at Periyar underwent a series of tests to check for non-communicable diseases.
Lab testing for field staff at Periyar Tiger Reserve.
A set of first-aid kits were provided to officials living in APCs in Ranthambore.
A camp medical officer speaks to field staff at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve.
Officials at Ranthambore register for a health check-up organised by WCT.
Sudarshan Sharma, DFO, Ranthambore Tiger Reserve stands with the MHU team.
An officer in Sariska gets a check-up by a physician at a WCT health camp.
The WCT MHU at Ranthambore Tiger Reserve.
Wildlife Crime Prevention training by Wildlife Conservation Trust at Amarkantak Forest Training School.
Balaghat, Rangers Training School.
Wildlife Crime Prevention Training organised by Wildlife Conservation Trust at Chandrapur.
Wildlife Law Enforcement Training at Chikhaldara.
Crime Scene Mapping exercise organised by Wildlife Conservation Trust at Chikhaldara.
Wildlife Law Enforcement Training at Panchmarhi organised by Wildlife Conservation Trust.
WCT conducts a training workshop on Provisions under the Wildlife Protection Act for Wildlife Crime Prevention at Spiti.
WCT conducts a training workshop on Crime Scene Investigation at Kundal.
Wildlife Conservation Trust conducts training for forest guards in Madhya Pradesh.
Wildlife Conservation Trust conducts a 3 day Training Module on Wildlife Law Enforcement for Forest Training School at Shivpuri, Madhya Pradesh.
Mudumalai forest officials at the inauguration of their RRUs donated by Wildlife Conservation Trust.
An RRU donated by WCT to the Anamalai Tiger Reserve, Tamil Nadu.
Forest officials selected to man a RRU in Anamalai receive a briefing on the equipment in the vehicle.
WCT’s President Dr. Anish Andheria hands over two RRUs to Dudhwa forest officials.