For private circulation only

       Branches@ATREE(A Bimonthly Newsletter)

Volume 4:1
January 2006

659 5th A Main, Hebbal
Bangalore 560 024
Tel: 080-23530069, 23533942
Fax: 080-2353 0070
Eastern Himalayas
Near Jubilee High School
Dr. B.L Dixit Road
PO Kalimpong
District Darjeeling
PIN 734301
Tel: 03552 257713
New Delhi
Chhatarpur Hill
New Delhi-110 074
Tel: 91-11- 2630 1044
Fax: 91-11-2630 1016
Advisory Board
Dr. R.A. Mashelkar
Dr. Jairam Ramesh
Dr. Anil K. Gupta
Dr. Peter Raven
Dr. Jagmohan Maini
Dr. Dan Martin
Executive Board
Dr. K. S. Bawa
Dr. K. N. Ganeshaiah
Dr. S. N. Rai
Dr. R. Uma Shaanker
Dr. Darshan Shankar
Mrs. Rohini Nilekani
Dr. Surinder M. Sehgal
Dr. Gladwin Joseph (ex-officio)
Executive Staff
Dr. Gladwin Joseph
Dr. Kartik Shanker
Mr. Suman Rai
Mr. Manoj Dabas


ATREE in association with Sandesh Kadur, wildlife photographer and documentary filmmaker based at the University of Texas at Brownsville and Kamal Bawa, Distinguished Professor at the University of Massachusetts and President of ATREE, has produced a coffee-table book that combines quality images and information about the Western Ghats in peninsular India. Sahyadris: India's Western Ghats - A Vanishing Heritage highlights the beauty and incredible diversity of life in the mountains that stretch nearly 1600 km along the southwestern coast of India. This region is considered as one of the global biodiversity hotspots in critical need of conservation.

The coffee-table book was dedicated to the public by presenting the first copy to the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh at his residence on 27 September. An exhibition of some thirty images by Sandesh Kadur, and a formal launch ceremony was held at the Taj Residency in Bangalore on 29 September. The formal launch was made by the Chief Guest of the evening and CEO of Infosys Technologies Nandan Nilekani. The book has been produced with support from the Arghyam Foundation.

-Siddhartha Krishnan


As a part of the British High Commission sponsored project on Ecotourism, two consultation workshops were organized on 21 November 2005 at Doddis Resort, Bangalore for the state of Karnataka and on 24 November at The Leela, Kovalam for the state of Kerala. These workshops were attended by representatives from stakeholder groups such as government, entrepreneurs, community, media and academicians. Deliberations focused on developing clear guidelines for regulating this fast expanding sector to ensure that it is ecologically sustainable and socially responsible. The discussions centered on issues of volumes versus value, carrying capacity of fragile ecosystems, community participation and benefit sharing.

-Jojo T.D.


ATREE, in collaboration with the GREEN Foundation, Bangalore, concluded a two-day, policy roundtable and Biodiversity Mela at Institute of Agricultural Technologists, Bangalore from 23 -24 July. The policy roundtable focused on certain legislation and policy that has been developed during the past four to five years. The roundtable specifically discussed legislation that regulates the development, trade, and exchange of seed varieties. These laws and policies thus have a significant impact on the rights of farmers to seeds, and the preservation of agricultural biodiversity and dependent livelihoods.

-Bansuri Taneja


Based on the realization that the degree of integration between conservation and livelihoods in the field seemed to be lagging behind the conceptual articulation, a workshop was organized 15-17 December in Bangalore to share and learn from the issues practitioners face. The intent was also to try to expand the constituencies that embrace conservation and livelihoods; i.e. work towards greater understanding of conservation amongst NRM and livelihoods groups, and vice versa.

The workshop was loosely organized around five themes: Institutions, Tenure, Economics and Livelihood Strategies, Policy and Law, and Monitoring Techniques. A rich diversity of case studies was presented in each of the sessions. A set of next steps were agreed upon by participants, and ATREE has offered its expertise to take the ideas emerging from the workshop forward.

-Bansuri Taneja


ATREE has been active in canopy studies in the past decade with studies on pollination, frugivory and phenological studies in Kalakad Mundunthurai Tiger Reserve. We have been working with the UK-based Global Canopy programme (GCP) for the last 2 years to establish a canopy research facility in India. A step towards this was initiated when ATREE organized a First Consultation Meeting at the Center for Ecological Sciences, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore in July. The meeting resulted in the formation of a Steering Committee that would initiate and coordinate establishment of a Whole Forest Observatory (WFO) in India. This will eventually lead to the development of an Indian Forest Canopy Programme. A canopy training programme will be held in 2006 to build indigenous capacity for carrying out canopy research and related activities. With requisite permits and funding, work for setting up the WFO should begin in mid 2007.

-Vivek. R.


A workshop on 'Community based Ecological Monitoring of NTFPs' was organized by Keystone Foundation, People and Plants International and ATREE in Pondicherry from 28-30 Nov 2005. This workshop was part of an ongoing project on developing participatory and inclusive methods for monitoring the sustainability of harvesting NTFPs. The aim of the workshop was to discuss and elaborate protocols/methods manuals combining scientists', managers' and harvesters' perspectives on harvesting and managing an NTFP. The discussions at the workshop were structured around different plant parts harvested: i.e. roots, leaves and whole plants; resins; bark; fruit, flowers and honey. Draft manuals prepared prior to the workshop will be added to with the learning derived at the Pondicherry workshop and circulated for comments and improvement.

-Bansuri Taneja and Nitin Rai


Jojo T.D. will be working on 'Reorienting Ecotourism Policies'. He has done his M.Phil (Environment Management) from Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam, Kerala.

Neha Ambastha will be working on NTFP Taxation project in Karnataka State. She is from Indian Institute of Forest Management, Bhopal and was working with Madhya Pradesh District Poverty Initiatives Project (MPDPIP) before joining ATREE.

Niloy Kumar Bhattacharjee will be working as a researcher at ATREE, New Delhi. He is from the Indian Institute of Forest Management, Bhopal and was working with Korea Trade Centre before joining ATREE.


J. Unruh, H. Nagendra, G.M. Green, B.J. McConnell and N. Vogt. 2005. Cross-continental comparisons: Africa and Asia. In Seeing the Forest and the Trees: Human-Environment Interactions in Forested Ecosystems, eds. Emilio Moran and Elinor Ostrom, MIT Press, Cambridge Massachusetts, pp. 303-324.

Nagendra, H., B. Karna and M. Karmacharya. 2005. Cutting across space and time: Examining forest co-management in Nepal. Ecology and Society 10(1): 24.

Nagendra, Harini. 2005. Book Review: The Economics of Land Use, in The International Library of Environmental Economics and Policy, ed. Peter J. Parks & Ian W. Hardie. Landscape Research 30(4): 559-571.

Nagendra, Harini. 2006. Entries in Our Earth's Changing Land: An Encyclopedia of Land-Use and Land-Cover Change, 2 vols., ed. Helmut Geist. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press.

Oommen M. A. and Shanker K. 2005. Regional species richness patterns emerge from multiple local scale mechanisms in Himalayan plants. Ecology. 86(11): 3039-3047.

Shanker K. and Kutty R. 2005. Sailing the flagship fantastic: myth and reality of sea turtle conservation in India. Maritime Studies. (Special Issue) 3 (2): 213-240.

Shanker K. 2005. Lessons from Norse Mythology: past diversity, ecology and evolution have significant roles in conservation. Down to Earth. 14 (12): 50.

Shanker K. 2005. The holy book and the sacred list: the IUCN's Red List for prioritizing species for protection is beset by serious flaws. Down to Earth. 14 (15): 50.

Shanker K. 2005. Reconciliation: Lessons in marine ecology. Down to Earth. 14 (17): 49.

Shanker K, Hiremath A, Bawa K. 2005. Linking biodiversity conservation and livelihoods in India. PloS Biol. 3 (11): e394.

Shanker K and Sridhar A. 2005. ed. Indian Ocean Turtle Newsletter. Issue 2.


Aarthi Sridhar and Kartik Shanker presented a poster titled 'Conflicts in Marine Conservation: Experiences from India's Marine Protected Areas' at the International Marine Protected Area Congress (IMPAC), Geelong Australia, 24 - 28 October 2005.

Aarthi Sridhar and Kartik Shanker made an oral presentation titled 'Suitability of an MPA design for Sea Turtle Protection in Orissa, India' at the International Marine Protected Area Congress (IMPAC), Geelong Australia, 24 - 28 October 2005.

Aarthi Sridhar made a presentation titled 'Community based Approaches to Marine Conservation in India' at DIVERSITAS, Oaxaca, Mexico, 9 - 12 November 2005

M. Irfan Ullah presented the activities of the ATREE-HP-UAS Ecoinformatics Centre, at the Global Biodiversity Informatics Facility (GBIF) Secretariat, Copenhagen, Denmark, September 05.

Nagendra, H., S. Pareeth, B. Karna and M. Karmacharya (2005). 'Integrating Satellite Image Analysis with Field Data for a Multi-Scale Assessment of Local Institutions and Biodiversity Distribution in Nepal.' First DIVERSITAS International Conference on Biodiversity, Oaxaca, Mexico, 9 - 12 November 2005.

Nagendra, H. and S. Pareeth (2005). Forest Conservation in the South Asian Landscape: Discrete and Continuous Views. 6th Open Meeting of the Human Dimensions of Global Environmental Change Research Community, University of Bonn, Germany, 9 - 13 October 2005.

Nagendra, H. (2005). 'Piecing Together the South Asian Landscape.' Society in Science Fellows Meeting, Collegium Budapest: Institute for Advanced Study, Budapest, 16 September 2005.

Nitin Rai presented a poster titled 'The Ecological and Socio-economic Aspects of Forest Fruit Harvest in the Western Ghats of India' at the First DIVERSITAS Open Science Conference held in Oaxaca, Mexico from the 9 - 12 November 2005.

Nitin Rai presented a talk titled 'A Fine Balance: Reconciling Conservation and Livelihoods through Non-Timber Forest Product harvest in India' at the Centro de Investigaciones en Ecosytemas, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico. Morelia, Mexico on 22 November 2005.

Nitin Rai gave a talk titled 'Assessing the Ecological Condition of NTFPs' at the 'National Consultation with Civil Society Organizations on NTFP Policy & Management' organized by the Centre for People's Forestry in Hyderabad, 15 - 16 September 2005.

Nitin Rai gave a talk titled 'Reconciling Conservation and Livelihoods: an overview' at the Second Western Ghats Forum held in Coimbatore, 2 - 3 December 2005.

Pareeth, S. and H. Nagendra (2005). 'Institutions, Protected Areas and Land Use - A Landscape Framework for Conservation in India.' Society for Conservation Biology: First Asia Section Meeting, Kathmandu, Nepal, 17 - 20 November 2005.

Vivek R. presented a paper on 'Population Status and Ecology of the Narcondam Hornbill (Aceros narcondami) in the Andaman Islands, India' at the 4th World Hornbill Conference at Bela Bela, South Africa, 5 - 11 November 2005.


Dr. Kartik Shanker and Dr. Gladwin Joseph. 'National Capacity Needs Self Assessment'. A grant from United Nations Development Program.

Dr. Soubhadra Devy and Dr. R. Ganesan, 'Revitalizing traditional bioresources on management practices in a forest dependent community around protected area in Tamil Nadu'. A grant from the Department of BioTechnology, Government of India.

Dr. S. N. Rai and Dr. Gladwin Joseph. Sri Lankan Forest Officers Study Tour. A grant from the Sri Lanka Forest Department.

Dr. Priyadarsanan, Dr. Seema Purushothaman and M.C. Kiran. 'Conservation, Participatory Management and Sustainable Development, The Case of Allapuzha-Vembanad Socio-Ecological System'. A grant from Akshaya Foundation.

Dr. Seema Purushothaman. 'Restructuring policies and practices to ensure ecologically sustainable and socially responsible eco-tourism'. A grant from the British High Commission's Sustainable Development Programme.

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