A study of the diet of the gray wolves (Canis lupus) in the Bogdkhan Mountain Strictly Protected Area (41,651ha), Mongolia, was conducted by analyzing 126 scats in June 2004 and 122 scats in June 2005. Horse hairs occurred in 62.7% of the scats in 2004 and 50.0% of the scats in 2005, and goat hairs occurred in 31.0% in 2004 and 41.8% in 2005. These values were significantly higher than for other prey species. The size of the Bogdkhan Mountain Strictly Protected Area is not large enough to maintain the five wolf packs that roam there, nor is the number of wild prey in the area sufficient to support them. Consequently, the wolves also hunt outside the protected area and depend on free-ranging livestock within and around the protected area.
Sika deer Cervus nippon invaded the Oze area of Japan in the 1990s and have resided there every summer. In 2000 and 2001, the effects of deer disturbance on mire vegetation were studied at Nagaike Mire, east of Ozenuma Mire. Since deer density was low there, any effects of defoliation were minor, but effects of digging were substantial. Deer dug in the mire only immediately after snowmelt, probably to forage on Menyanthes trifoliata rhizomes. Rhizomes of this species contain as much as 6.6% nitrogen and are fragrant, suggesting that they contain some attractants for ungulates. The direct effects of digging almost completely destroyed neighboring plants, although digging affected only 5 to 6% area of the mire. The effects of digging were unique: they altered water flow, indirectly influencing other plants that grew some distance from dig sites. Careful monitoring of the deer population and mire vegetation is therefore necessary.
Among developed nations, both Canada and Japan have introduced legislation regarding endangered species (species at risk) only in relatively recent times. We compare these and various other biodiversityrelated laws and draw insights about their effectiveness. To illustrate these insights we compare, in a number of case histories, conservation situations of American Black Bear and Asiatic Black Bear, and North American Grizzly and Japanese Brown Bears, Northern Spotted Owl and Blakiston's Fish Owl, and Whooping Cranes and Red-crowned Cranes. We discuss the limitations faced in conserving these high profile wildlife species. A key factor in conserving such wildlife in the coming years will be the involvement of local communities in conservation action.
Base sequences of cytochrome b and D-loop regions in mtDNA were determined to examine the phylogenetic relationship between the Jungle Crow Corvus macrorhynchos and the Carrion Crow C. corone. The extent of homologies of base sequences and amino acids in cytochrome b (690bp) between Jungle and Carrion Crows was 91.6 and 99.1%, respectively. The similarity of the base sequences of the D-loop between Jungle and Carrion Crows was shown to be 98%, which was higher in comparison with those between them and the Rook C. frugilegus (87.4-87.6%, respectively). These findings suggest that the Jungle and Carrion crows are more closely related to each other than to the Rook.
The size and composition of flocks of Red Jungle Fowl Gallus gallus were recorded during spontaneous observations on a road in Alaungdaw Kathapa National Park, Myanmar in the middle of the dry season in 2007. The flocks observed on the 1,600m section of the road consisted of four mixed sex groups, two female only groups, and five solitary males. The average flock size was 2.2 birds if solitary males were included. The overall sex ratio was 1:1.2 which showed no bias from evenness. The population density in the road side secondary forest was tentatively estimated to be 0.8 birds/ha, making it one of the highest densities reported so far.
We examined the water quality of seven lakes and associated marshes and the extent of their use by breeding birds, mammals of conservation significance as well as human in the southwestern Tibetan plateau of Changthang, Ladakh. The assessment revealed that the physical and aggregate properties, inorganic nonmetals and metals in the water of the lakes were significantly different from each other. The physical and chemical properties of the lakes have changed since the first limnological study conducted in 1932, largely due to increasing anthropogenic factors. During the study 16 species of water birds were recorded from the area, of which seven species were breeding. The Bar-headed Goose Anser indicus was found nesting at almost all of the lakes. The mean encounter rate of Bar-headed Goose varied between 3.5 to 17 km-1 among lakes, where as for Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea it was 1 to 58 km-1. The area has high biodiversity value in terms of habitat for mammals of conservation significance. Among the eight identified human use parameters, which could pose threat to the integrity of these lakes and associated wetlands are: uncontrolled tourism, excessive grazing by livestock, biomass extraction and diversion of stream water for agricultural purpose. The overall disturbance regime was highest for Tso Kar and Tso Moriri. Recognizing the conservation significance of the area, the Indian Changthang has been declared as a Protected Area, forbidding any form of resource extraction and only limited tourism. However, because of lack of alternative livelihood options, local people are forced to depend on the scarce natural resources and the declaration of the PA has been ineffective. Proposal to declare the area as a Biosphere Reserve is a welcome step, but ultimately it is the complementarity of conservation and development at the landscape level that will secure the sustainability of this fragile ecosystem.