Adopting animals, trees should be encouraged

Published: 29 October, 2013 07:17 IST | MiD DAY Correspondent |

It is good that Shiv Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray's desire to adopt two tigers in the Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP) has made headlines. But it should not be for just publicity and little else

The SGNP’s proposal for the animal adoption scheme is yet to get official clearance, but the scheme for adoption of trees is in full swing. The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) recently initiated the programme wherein people can pay a one-time fee of Rs 10,000 to adopt a tree at its Conservation Education Centre (CEC) reserve in Goregaon (E). The 33-acre reserve has over 125 indigenous tree species.

Similarly, the SGNP proposes that about 50 to 60 animals can be adopted for a period of one year, with the money raised through adoption contributing to the animal’s food, maintenance of enclosure and its medical treatment for the year. Adopters and their families can visit their animal once a month.

Though the proposal has yet to be approved, it has been received positively by people and organisations. This will serve to bring people and animals closer, besides giving the adopter a feeling of belonging — as their name will be displayed on a plaque at the animal’s enclosure.

The same programme should be encouraged for trees, perhaps with greater vigour. Tree adopters also get their name tag, as well as a photograph of the adopter with the tree, a record of its GPS location and an adoption certificate. Adoptive ‘parents’ receive a mail from the BNHS with a photo of the tree and seasonal updates for five years after adoption.

Moreover, the BNHS will also email adopters interesting observations on birds, bees and butterflies on their tree, and pictures of its flowers/fruit. It’s a treat for wildlife and nature lovers. So why wait? 

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