Save them from poachers
Key Learning Outcomes
2 hours (Approximately)
Students will be able to explain the effects of human activities and encroachment on the flora and fauna present in forests through this lesson. The students are expected to create a game in which they are expected to prevent the flora and fauna of different types of biosphere reserves from human activities and encroachment. If student successfully completes the research on the policies made to identify and protect endangered species, and about few reserves where human activities are allowed in controlled manner, they can create this game in given time.
Concepts to understand:
2.1 Forests as biosphere.
Forest is home for variety of species of plants and animals. The plant population in the forest is termed as total flora of the forest. Similarly, the animal population of the forest is termed as fauna. Apart from commonly observed species of plants and animals, forest is also home for few endemic species of plants or animals which are only observed in the region and not around. Endemic species of plant or animals are regularly found in a particular place for example red panda is only found in the Himalayan region of India and southwestern china. They are not found in any other forests. Similarly, spruce and pine are only found in hilly region.
Forest provides us timber, medicinal plants, minerals, charcoal, wood oil, resin, lac, honey, and many other products. Apart from this, forests help us in regulating the rain cycle, regulating atmospheric temperature, and lowering carbon dioxide concentration from the air.
2.2 Harmful effects of human activities on forest
We humans are using the forest resources at a greater pace.
- We use the timbre for construction and furniture products.
- We use forest land for grazing, construction of roads, tunnel etc.
- We use medicinal plants from forest to extract medicine.
- We use rubber, resins and lac produced from the forest to make variety of objects.
- We also mine and extract fossil fuels from the forest land.
We are consuming forest resources at alarming rate. Human encroachment into the forests have created the following problems to the forest eco system:
- Deforestation: Part of the forest land in which trees are cut down for construction, or agricultural or any other activity reduces the area of forest. It reduces the soil fertility of forest and can cause flood like situation in many areas.
- Rise in global warming: Due to increasing deforestation, concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is increasing. Carbon dioxide gas traps heat from the sun and increases the atmospheric temperature. This is called as global warming.
- Droughts: Forest keep the climate cool and, also help to regulate the rain cycle. Due to deforestation the amount of rain in certain region reduces. And in certain case, it can lead to the situation of no rainfall at all. The phenomenon of no rainfall can lead to condition of drought.
- Desertification: Plants of forests keep the soil bound in one place. Due to increase in deforestation, the topsoil becomes loose and is either blown away by wind or washed down by the rainwater. Gradually forest land turns in desert and land loses its fertility. No other crop can be cultivated in such land thereafter.
- Loss of natural shelter for animal: Due to increased human encroachment in the parts or interior of forests, many species of animals, birds and insects have lost their natural home and habitat and develop sense of insecurity. In many cases, this results in wild animals reaching to human settlements in search of food and shelter. Such wild animals have threat of deadly human encounter and in some cases, animals are trapped or killed to save human lives.
- Hunting: Hunting as a sport has gained popularity in certain parts of world where wild animals are killed for fun. Due to excessive hunting many species of wild animals have gone extinct or are on the verge of extinction. It is important that hunting should be discouraged so that the natural habitat is protected.
- Animal trafficking: Wild animals are hunted or killed for their leathers, skin or for other body parts. For example, bears are killed for their thick fur from which jackets are made. Crocodiles are killed for their skin from which leather wallets, belts and shoes are made. In certain parts of Tibet and Southern China, tigers are killed for medicinal use of their bones. In Africa, white elephant is killed for their tusks and bones from which Ivory artifacts are made.
2.3 Conservation of forest and wildlife.
Becoming aware of devastating effects of deforestation and human encroachment into forest, government has provided effective measures to conserve the wildlife and forest resources by identifying and protecting forests by classifying them into the following:
- a) Wildlife sanctuary: Forest areas where animals are protected from any disturbance to them and their habitat from any human activity are called wildlife sanctuary. The capturing, killing, and poaching of animals is strictly prohibited in these regions.
Following is list of wildlife sanctuaries in India
Name of Wildlife Sanctuaries
Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary
Chilika Lake Bird Sanctuary
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary
Gir National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary
Govind Wildlife Sanctuary
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Tourism is not permitted in a wildlife sanctuary. People are not allowed unescorted there. The main objective of establishing a wildlife sanctuary is to educate humans as to how to treat the animals. The animals are taken care of and allowed to live peacefully in their natural habitats.
Importance of Wildlife Sanctuaries
There are number of reasons for establishing wildlife sanctuaries. Some of the reasons are listed below:
- The wildlife sanctuaries are established to protect the endangered species.
- It is quite difficult to always relocate the animals from their natural habitat, therefore, protecting them in their natural environment is advantageous.
- The endangered species are specially monitored in the wildlife sanctuaries. If they reproduce and grow in number while under protection, few specimens can be kept for breeding in the conservation parks for their survival.
- Biologist activities and research are permitted in the wildlife sanctuaries so that they can learn about the animals living there.
- A few sanctuaries take in injured and abandoned animals and rehabilitate them to health before releasing them in the forest.
- Wildlife sanctuaries preserve the endangered species and protect them from humans and predators.
- b) National Park: National parks are areas that aim to protect the natural environment. They are also involved in public recreation and enjoyment activities. In a national park, the landscapes and its flora and fauna are present in their natural state.
Following are few national parks present in India
Name of National Park
Bandipur National Park
Bandhavgarh National Park
Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary
Corbett National Park
Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary
Dudhwa National Park
Gir National Park and Sasan Gir Sanctuary
Hemis National Park
Jammu & Kashmir
Kanha National Park
Kaziranga National Park
National parks are under protection of government agencies. Only limited parts of the forests are kept open for tourists. In certain national parks, we need to take special permissions to visit.
c) Biosphere reserves: Large areas of protected land for conservation of wild
life, plant and animal resources and traditional life of the tribal population living in the area. These areas are protected and guarded by government agencies to ensure zero encroachment and tourism in this area.
The purpose of creating biosphere reserve, national park or wildlife sanctuary is as follow:
- Protection of Endangered Species
Many species of plants and animals are on the verge of extinction. For example, there are only few Asiatic Lions left in India. Such creatures are conserved in the wildlife sanctuaries.
- Protection to Endemic species
Endemic species are those species of plants and animals which are found exclusively in a particular area. They are not naturally found anywhere else. A particular type of animal or plant may be endemic to a zone, a state, or a country. For example, a giant flying squirrel is an endemic species to Panchmarahi biosphere reserve. This species is protected here from hunting, poaching or any other human interference.
- Conservation of Biodiversity
By protecting a forest, we preserve the flora and fauna in their natural state with minimal or zero human interference. National parks are created to conserve the biodiversity of a forest in their natural state with minimal tourism activities allowed in such place.
Due to unregulated poaching activities, population of endemic species to a national park is reducing at an alarming rate. If safety measures are not taken in time, large population of endemic species would be killed by hunting or be traded illegally for their body parts. By studying this concept chart and spending time of research wing, game can be developed in given time.
Game Design Overview:
Imagine you are a wildlife officer currently stated in a national park. You have got reports of illegal hunting and poaching activities in your national park, along with increasing plastic waste pollution. This is causing damage to flora and fauna of the forest. You need to protect the wildlife against poachers and hunters. Also need to reduce the plastic pollution by visitors to zero.
How to Design the Game:
Level 1: Reduce the plastic pollution by visitors.
By passing clear instructions to the visitors on do’s and don’ts plastic pollution can be controlled. Also, fine can be imposed on the one who litters around.
A game can be created with a story line where a tourist driving in a vehicle visits different zones covering
1) a pond giving information about various aquatic and amphibians living in that area.
2) On visiting hilly region, they find pictures and information about various birds, small animals like monkeys, mountain lion etc in this region
3) On entering woods, images of different wild animals are shown and information about them are shared.
4) If the tourist enters the restricted or preserved area a warning will be given to them. And a forest officer escorts them to back to the tourist area.
5) Fun facts about wildlife photography, eco-tourism, etc can be shared with them
Level 2: Protection of wild fauna against poachers
On a map, restricted areas and tourist areas are marked. Along with this you can have alarms and surveillance cameras installed in restricted areas that can detect human activities in the area.
A game is to be created on the story line of:
- a) Wild animal hunting
- b) Poaching
The player must set alarms and install the surveillance cameras in the protected regions. Furthermore, once there is an activity in the camera, alarm in context with encroachment, hunting or poaching you will have to click the alert button to ensure timely action.
Learning Objective Based Evaluation (0-2)
Higher Order Thinking Skills
Learning Objective Based Evaluation Total Score
Higher Order Thinking Skills Total Score
Learning Objective Based Evaluation
1 point Questions:
Q1. Which of the following animal is only found in the Himalayan region of India and Southwestern China?
- Polar Bear
- African Elephant
- Red Panda
- Royal Bengal Tiger
Q2. Wildlife sanctuaries are established to protect ____________.
- endangered species
- culture and heritage
2 point Question:
Q3. Which of the following statements are true?
- The wildlife sanctuaries are established to protect the endangered species.
- Wildlife sanctuaries preserve the endangered species and encourage hunting and poaching
- National parks are created for tourists to come and visit the animals
- Hunting of animals should be encouraged
Evaluation of HOTS (Higher Order Thinking Skills)
Identification of the Problem Statement:
Q4. What is the objective of the game that you have designed? (1 point)
Q5. Does the game designed solve the problem? Justify your answer. (1 point)
Solution of the Problem Statement:
Q6. How does the game designed address the problem? (1 point)
Q7. Can the solution be implemented in real life? Justify your answer (1 point)
Innovation in the Problem Statement:
Q8. What are the innovative aspects of the solution for which the game is designed? (2 points)
Creativity in the Game Design:
Q9. Describe and explain the unique design elements used in the game. (2 points)
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