JAMMU : Environment is the main thematic area in today’s arena for the people on earth planet wherein, major and current environmental issues include climate change, pollution, environmental degradation, and resource depletion.

Embarking on the cause, a mega scientific campaign on Butterflies diversity and conservation was today organized by Entomological Science Academy (ESA), in collaboration with Department of Ecology, Environment and Remote Sensing, here at Raika Environmental Park, Jammu on the direction of Vice chancellor SKUAST-Jammu, Prof J.P Sharma and as desired by Principal Secretary, Forest, Ecology and Environment Sanjeev Verma.

The main theme and aim of this campaign was to document the biodiversity of butterflies of Raika Environmental Forest Park, their identifications and further manage the habitat for enhancing the population of beautiful butterflies. Butterflies have always been the matter of fascination for the people. They are not only providing mental peace but they are the viable source of pollination. An important question of this mission was to estimate their biodiversity in protected versus disturbed habitat Raika. Environmental Park is the protected area where a large variety of butterflies exists on natural vegetation. It was found that in comparison to disturbed habitats with nine species in common, the diversity is immense in the park with about more than 21 different types of butterfly species.

On this occasion, Director, Ecology and environment, S. Rakesh Kumar, highlighted the importance of Raika environmental Park for recreation and best outing places for the Jammu people. He further emphasized on the floral and faunal diversity of butterflies and applauded the efforts of entomologists of SKUAST-Jammu to extend their expertise for improved habitat management techniques for Butterfly Park to conserve them for keeping the environment safe and sound.

Dr. Rakesh Gupta, President, Entomological Science Academy (ESA) portrayed the contribution of butterflies in making the environment clean, best means of recreation, feed for few other predators for maintaining the food web in the protected and conserved area of Raika Park. He further emphasized on making a museum of butterflies for attracting kids towards the park and gave a clear message to the people of Jammu, nature lover and other tourists visiting Raika Park to help conserve the butterflies.

Over 30 PG students along with other faculty members including Dr. R.S. Bandral, Dr. Kamlesh Bali, Dr. Uma Shankar and Dr. Amit K. Singh participated in the awareness camp and expressed their views in maintaining diversity and conservation of butterflies. Besides these, they were instrumental in collecting the diverse specimens of butterflies and also focussed on processing and pinning for the educational purposes. Salim Haq, DFO of concerned park distributed the wildlife Kit to the students and extended all the requisite facilities. He also presented the vote of thanks along with the Ranger Anil Sharma.