Residents will just need to enter the count of the monkeys sighted along with their size and if possible their gender, ML Rajvanshi who is the state coordinator for the annual census said.
The Wildlife Institute of India (WII) in a unique initiative has invited residents of Haryana state to participate in the first ever Monkey census in the state through a mobile application.The census which is being conducted by the WII in association with the state Forest department is going to be conducted between April 28 and April 30. Named ‘Wildlife Census Haryana’ the free application is available on play store which can be downloaded by the interested residents. According to an Indian Express report, the application is equipped with recording the current location of the person using the application. As far as the task of the participants is concerned, residents will just need to enter the count of the monkeys sighted along with their size and if possible their gender, ML Rajvanshi who is the state coordinator for the annual census told the Indian Express.
The census will be conducted between two time slots on the scheduled dates- 5.30 am to 10 am, and 5 pm to 7 pm. The unique mobile application which will allow people’s participation in the first ever Monkey census in the state has been designed by Dr Bilal Habib who is a senior scientist with the Wildlife Institute of India (WII), Dehradun. Haryana has witnessed an increase in the human-animal conflicts in recent years and the Monkey census will shed some light on the count of monkeys and related human-monkey conflicts. Districts which have remained prone to the human-monkey conflicts in the Haryana state include Yamunanagar, Ambala, Hisar, Panchkula, Kurushetra, Bhiwani, Kaithal, Gurugaon and Faridabad among others.
During the development of the mobile application, the forest officials had also toyed with the idea of enabling residents to click the photographs of Monkeys and put them up on the application. However, the officials thought better of it later as the photo feature would have rendered the application too heavy and caused problems for residents.
It is worth noting that Rhesus macaques come are listed in the second schedule of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 which accords them heightened protection. Haryana Wildlife Census 2021 commenced in the state on April 12 this month and it will be conducted in multiple phases. The census is expected to conclude in the state by July 30.