Human activities have increased the extinction rate by at least 100 times more than the natural rate which thereby affects forest and wildlife conservation and reserves. The increase in depletion and extinction of the world’s biodiversity has led to a much greater interest and attention from the global community to protect the environment and safeguard thousands of species.
Forest and Wildlife Conservation
Forest and Wildlife conservation is wise use and the practice of protecting wild plant (Trees) and animal species and their habitat.
Forest and wildlife play an important role in balancing the ecosystem and provides stability to different natural processes of nature.
The goal of forest and wildlife conservation is to ensure that nature will be sustained for future generations to enjoy and also to recognize the importance of wildlife and wilderness for humans and other species alike.
In-situ conservation is the conservation of species in their natural habitats, is considered the most appropriate way of conserving biodiversity.
Conserving the areas where populations of species exist naturally is an underlying condition for the conservation of biodiversity.
Ex-situ conservation is the preservation of components of biological diversity outside their natural habitats.
This involves conservation of genetic resources, as well as wild and cultivated or species, and draws on a diverse body of techniques and facilities.
Forest and Wildlife Reserves
Forest reserves are portions of state lands where commercial harvesting of wood products is excluded in order to capture elements of biodiversity that can be missing from sustainably harvested sites.
Small (patch) reserves will conserve sensitive, localized resources such as steep slopes, fragile soils, and habitat for certain rare species that benefit from intact forest canopies.
A National park is a large, predominantly unaltered area of land and/or sea characterized by exceptional and varied natural assets, comprising one or several preserved or predominantly unaltered ecosystems, and is primarily set aside for the conservation of original natural assets.
Challenges to Forest/Wildlife Conservation
The major threats to wildlife are loss of habitat, overhunting, and poaching. Wildlife habitat is being destroyed by logging, farming, and exploitation for fuel wood, illegal grazing inside wildlife reserves, industrial plantation of exotic trees, housing and highway development.
Hunting is a traditional occupation and because of the high demand for ‘bush meat’, trophies and animal parts as ingredients of medicinal and magical concoctions; hunters are assured of a lucrative market.
Judicial Enforcement of Park Legislations
For effective enforcement of park laws and legislations as well as wildlife laws, judiciary is important. However, respondents have complained that the judiciary appears not to understand the dynamics of National parks and conservation laws and as such poor adjudication has been prominent even with incontrovertible evidences against the accused.
In summary, the knowledge of forest and wildlife conservation will prove to be invaluable assets not only for the economy growth of the country but most importantly for the preservation of this precious heritage.