World Wildlife Day

World Wildlife Day Quick Facts - IN

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2024 Date3 March 2024
2025 Date3 March 2025

World Wildlife Day

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World Wildlife Day History

World Wildlife Day highlights the importance of fauna and flora to maintain ecological balance. Its primary purpose is to raise minds and hearts to the value of wildlife, stressing the urgent need to curb wildlife crimes which disturb biodiversity. The Observance underscores the wide-ranging benefits that conservation provides to people, particularly those communities relying heavily on wildlife for their livelihood. The health of humans, animals, and the environment are intricately connected by asserting a 'One Health' approach in policy and planning for wildlife conservation. This linkage, indeed, anchors the roadmap towards building a world that can support biodiversity and human health.

The United Nations officially proclaimed World Wildlife Day on 20th December 2013 at its 68th General Assembly, with a vision to celebrate and raise awareness of the world's wild flora and fauna. The relevance of World Wildlife Day for India is profound, given the country's rich biodiversity. India houses around 8% of the world's species, including many endangered ones. Events like World Wildlife Day highlight India's responsibility to preserve its unique cross-section of wildlife – an effort that also reinforces the efforts of the global community in its endeavor to conserve the world’s biodiversity.

In India, World Wildlife Day is observed through various awareness programs to recognize the nation's pivotal role in global biodiversity. Rallies, marches, and discussions by governmental, non-governmental, and civilian bodies take place nationwide. Wildlife documentaries and nature-related study programs are aired and organized to promote biodiversity's value. The Indian media typically portrays success stories about preserving endangered species, thus showcasing positive conservation efforts. World Wildlife Day is celebrated each year on March 3rd.

Facts about World Wildlife Day

  • The theme for World Wildlife Day in 2024 was Connecting People and Planet: Exploring Digital Innovation in Wildlife Conservation. In 2023 the theme was Recovering key species for ecosystem restoration.
  • Elephants, pangolins, rhinoceros, sharks and tigers are among the most critically poached and trafficked species in the world.
  • According to the UN, the biggest threat to wildlife is habitat loss. Other threats include overgrazing, farming, and development. Habitat loss accounts for 80% of the loss in biological diversity.
  • India has a rich biodiversity, with over 130,000 species of plants, animals, and microorganisms. India's diverse ecosystems range from the Himalayan mountains to the Western Ghats and Sundarbans mangroves, each hosting unique species.
  • India is a signatory to CITES, an international treaty that aims to ensure that the trade of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.

Top things to do in India for World Wildlife Day

  • Enjoy the planet’s biodiversity by visiting the zoo or by going on a safari. You could also visit a nature museum, a botanical garden, or a national park to see the wide variety of flora and fauna.
  • Volunteer to help clean up trash and other debris along a beach, park or stretch of road. Garbage and debris pollute the water and land habitats of our planet's plants and animals. In addition to polluting, garbage and debris can be ingested by animals or can act as a net and trap them.
  • Watch a film to learn more about Wildlife in India:
    The Story of India - This documentary by Michael Wood explores the culture, history, and landscapes of India, including its diverse wildlife.
    Wildest India - This five part series by Discovery channel is a must watch. It explores the fauna and flora across different landscapes from Himalayas to the Indian Ocean.
  • Explore Wildlife Sanctuaries: Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary are few of the prominent sanctuaries in India where one can observe and learn about numerous species in their natural habitat.

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