The following pledge sums up the direction of WANC's activities:
WANCers pledge to...
- Respect Nature
- Support conservation activities
- Learn all we can about Nature and
- Share our knowledge of nature with others
I) GRASS ROOT ACTIVITIES:
1) Activism: Our working in close cooperation with Government agencies has resulted in protection for wildlife like Slender loris, Blackbuck and Painted storks. At the same time we have retained enough independence to take on powerful anti-environment forces including corrupt Government servants and politicians. Among others, this has forced the Government to halt projects like University campus and roads inside India's second oldest reserve forest and Tumkur District's only conservation reserve for Blackbuck.
2) Media: Members of the club regularly write for local vernacular dailies, national newspapers, and wildlife magazines/journals. Also, WANC previously raised many issues through its quarterly newsletter 'The Naturalist'. Our online blog has replaced the newsletter now, in tune with changing times.
3) Outings: Outings to create public awareness on wildlife and to monitor habitat and threats to bio-diversity are regularly organised. For the public they are usually done on weekend in the forests and wetlands near Tumakuru City, like Devarayanadurga state forest and Tumakuru Amanikere. During winter, outings to sight migratory waterfowl extend across Tumakuru District.
4) Nature Camps: WANC regularly organises nature camps for school students and others in different parts of Karnataka state. Camps have been organised in various protected areas of Karnataka notably Bandipur Tiger Reserve, Nagarhole National Park, Bhadra Tiger Reserve and Jayamangali (Maidenahalli) Blackbuck Conservation Reserve.
5) Treks to tropical forests: WANC organises eco-friendly trekking Programmes in various tropical forests of Karnataka like the rainforests along the Western Ghats. Various activities in these treks for adventure loving youth include bird watching, butterfly identification, wildlife photography, and most importantly enjoying the scenic splendour of vast stretches of the forests, without any sort of harmful interference.
6) Talks and slide shows: Regular talks and slideshows by prominent wildlifers are organised by WANC to gain more knowledge about the bio-diversity in which we are living.
7) Eco-resource persons: Members regularly participate in various eco-awareness programmes as resource persons, like National Wildlife Week celebrations by the Forest Department, World Environment Day by State Pollution Control Board. Members have visited different parts of south India to give illustrated slide shows on wildlife conservation. Apart from Government agencies, many organisations have benefited from the expertise of WANC naturalists like CP Ramaswamy Foundation, Chennai, Centre for Environment Education, Bengaluru, etc.
8) Echo - 2000: This is an annual event started by WANC in 1991. It is a competition event where many schools of Tumakuru city present various dramas & dances with their focus on the status of environment in the year 2000 AD. The last event was held in 2000.
9) Anti-wildlife trade: WANC supplies information and works closely with the forest department, State Police - Forest Cell and other conservation agencies against wildlife trade, with focus on Tumakuru district.
10) Field Trips: Restricted to members of WANC, field trips are organised to various national parks and wildlife sanctuaries of south India. This is an excellent platform for members to share their knowledge, experiences, feel one with nature and to get inspired to do more for this noble cause.
11) Rehabilitation of injured wildlife: WANC has been involved in rehabilitating injured wildlife since inception. Small wildlife, like birds, small mammals, reptiles etc that are handed over to WANC by public, are taken care of and then rehabilitated in the wild. A veterinary doctor regularly attends the injured wildlife.
12) Relocation of snakes: Many members of WANC are very well experienced in catching snakes, both poisonous and non-poisonous, which happen to stray in to houses of Tumakuru city. These snakes are then released in to the nearby Devarayanadurga state forest, unharmed. All this is done free of cost.Till date thousands of snakes have been released in the wild.
13) Snakes' education: Live snakes shows and illustrated slide shows on snakes are held by WANC members where people are educated about snakes, the differences between poisonous and non poisonous ones and if interested on how to handle them in emergency. Medical doctors & para medics from WANC educate these people about the first aid during the unfortunate circumstances of snakebite.
14) Checklists: WANC has been recording and constantly updating the checklists of flora and fauna of important habitats of Tumakuru district. At present there are about 20 checklists of different forests, wetlands and grasslands, maintained by WANC.
15) Wildlife census: Members regularly take part in wildlife census in association with the forest department. So far members have attended census programmes in the states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and recently Uttar Pradesh.
16) Afforestation programmes: Over the years, WANC has involved itself in various afforestation programmes in deforested areas with the help of rural community and students.
II) NON-LOCAL ACTIVITIES:
1) Bird counts: WANC has been participating in Dr. Salim Ali Bird Count (organised annually on 12 Nov., to mark the birthday of Dr. Salim Ali) and Asian Waterfowl Census, co-ordinated by Malaysia based Wetland International, since 1991
2) Representations to meets: WANC has been represented at various international & national seminars to exchange views on conservation issues.
3) Tiger Link: WANC is a part of Tiger Link, a global linkage of people and organizations to save the tiger.
4) Gets involved in annual global events like Earth Day, World Water Day, 'Clean up the World' by UNEP.
III) INTERNET ACTIVISM:
Since this is the age of internet, members of WANC actively participate in online discusssion groups like NatHistory, BNGcore and BNGbirds. Information is also dispensed through members' websites.
> The club meets on the first and third Saturday of each month at 6 pm at its office in Tumakuru - 'Nisarga'. Those who wish to participate can join us.
> Click on the image below for a story on the annual mid-winter exercise of counting Migratory birds.
Pic (above): A slender loris resceud from Tumakuru Amanikere is being released in Devarayanadurga State Forest by Forest Guard Mr.Bore Gowda (right), Range Forest Officer, Mr.Ganganna (centre) and WANC wildlife rescuer Mr.Khizar (left).
Pic (above): Teachers from Mysore District observing a Common Cobra in Devarayanadurga State Forest.
Read stories of WANCers' experience in wildlife census below.