The government of Union Territory (UT) of Ladakh has declared ‘Snow leopard’ (Panthera uncia) as its state animal and ‘Black-necked crane’ (Grus nigricollis) as its state bird.
i.Earlier (prior to the administrative division) Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) had the Black-necked crane and Kashmir stag (Hangul) as its state bird and animal.
ii.The black-necked crane is found in eastern Ladakh, whereas the Hangul is in Kashmir.
iii.Hence, after the bifurcation into 2 separate administrations, the black-necked crane was now declared as the state bird of Ladakh.
- As per the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, the central government has bifurcated the state J&K into 2 UTs viz, J&K and Ladakh.
i.Eastern Ladakh is the only known breeding ground in India for Black-necked cranes outside China.
ii.Population: The estimated population of Black-necked Crane in Ladakh region is between 80-100. The global population is estimated to be ~6,000.
iii.It is listed in Schedule I of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972 and as Near-threatened on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.
i.It is found native to the mountain ranges of Central and South Asia.
ii.Population: The estimated population of individual Snow -Leopard in Ladakh alone is between 200-300.
iii.It is listed in Schedule I of the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972 and as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List.
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