Status and population of vultures in Moyar Valley, southern India

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R. Venkitachalam
S. Senthilnathan


Four species of vultures were surveyed using road transects in two parts of the Moyar Valley, three of these are Critically Endangered by IUCN criteria and one is Endangered.  The vulture study was done for the first time in Nilgiri North Forest Division and Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve of Moyar Valley to determine the flock size in the three species of vultures and also to get a rough estimation of vultures. The results show higher flock size and higher densities in Nilgiri North Forest Division than in Sathyamangalam Tiger Reserve and the most numerous of these was the White-rumped Vulture.  There is also evidence of seasonal movements in Nilgiri North Forest Division.  These data represent the first systematic survey results from the area and demonstrate the significance of the Moyar Valley for all four Endangered vulture species, probably the main stronghold remaining in southern India.  They are White-rumped Vulture Gyps bengalensis, Indian Vulture Gyps indicus, Red-headed Vulture Sarcogyps calvus and Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus.  The study recommends that immediate long-term conservation efforts should be taken to save the Critically Endangered vultures in the Moyar Valley.


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How to Cite
Venkitachalam, R. and Senthilnathan, S. 2016. Status and population of vultures in Moyar Valley, southern India. Journal of Threatened Taxa. 8, 1 (Jan. 2016), 8358–8364. DOI:
Author Biographies

R. Venkitachalam, Ph.D. Scholar, PG Research and Department of Zoology, Government Arts College (affiliatted to Bharathiar University), Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu 641018, India

Dr. R. Venkitachalam is a Research Associate at Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE), Bangalore. He completed his Ph.D on Status and Ecology of Threatened vulture species in Moyar Valley, Tamilnadu. He so far completed research projects on Hornbills in the Eastern Ghats, one on Ecosystem monitoring (Component Ornithology) in Keoladeo National Park, involved captive management programme on vultures conservation in India and two projects on in situ Conservation of vultures in Tamil Nadu.  At present he is studying dynamics of ecosystem services in Western Ghats of Tamil Nadu.


S. Senthilnathan, PG Research and Department of Zoology, Chikkana Government Arts College (affiliated to Bharathiar University), Tirupur, Tamil Nadu 641602, India

Dr. S. Senthilnathan is working as Assistant Professor in the Department of Zoology, Chikkanna Government Arts College, Tirupur.  He has more than twenty years research experience and done a commendable work on environmental studies.  He is an awarded of UGC Research Associateship and CSIR Scientist Pool Officership in his credit.  He has also worked with several research institutions like CAS in Marine Biology, Annamalai University, Salim Ali Centre for Ornithology and Natural History (SACON), Coimbatore and CEE, Ahmadabad. He completed the World Bank projects under PWD, Tamil Nadu and published several papers in the national and international in the field of environmental science in reputed journals.



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