CCMB to host wildlife conservation conference

Ten speakers from six countries to address the gathering

More than 200 zoo and wildlife veterinarians, biologists, researchers, conservationists and zoo managers are participating in the international conference on ‘Advancements in veterinary sciences for wildlife conservation’ and 13th annual meeting of association of zoo and wildlife veterinarians at the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CCMB) from Nov. 13-15.

CCMB Director Rakesh Mishra said on Wednesday that the three-day conference is to strengthen scientific collaborations at national and international levels to achieve better outcomes for wildlife conservation.

About 10 speakers representing six countries are scheduled to address the gathering at the conference which would showcase the latest research advances made in the area of conservation breeding and management of endangered wildlife species through 66 posters and 25 oral presentations. The conference covers broader research aspects such as wildlife health, zoo biology, conservation genomics and reproductive technologies.

“In India itself, about 200 animal species are threatened due to several anthropogenic factors. Given this scenario, and the pace of extinctions, there is a pressing need to conserve and propagate these species both in situ (in nature) and ex situ (in zoos),” he said.

The Laboratory of the Conservation of Endangered Species (LaCONES) of CCMB, established in 2006, has been carrying out modern biotechnological research on a variety of Indian wildlife with the goal of conserving our precious biodiversity.

Veterinarians at the institute have been playing an important role in wildlife research and conservation programmes requiring animal handling, anaesthesia and disease screening. They are also involved in development of reproductive technologies – including artificial insemination, semen collection, cryopreservation, in vitro fertilization and managing the National Wildlife Genetic Resource Bank, explained the director.

These activities are supported by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Central Zoo Authority, and zoos across the country. In this context, he pointed out that mouse deer was successfully reintroduced into the world following conservation breeding in Nehru Zoological Park, he added.

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