Environment and EcologyGeneral Studies III

Indian Rhino Vision 2020 (IRV 2020)


Two adult one-horned rhinos were recently translocated from Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary to Manas National Park, under the aegis of the Indian Rhino Vision 2020 (IRV 2020).

  • With this last leg of wild-to-wild translocation under IRV2020, a total of 22 rhinos have been translocated from Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary (12) and Kaziranga National Park (10) to Manas National Park.

About Indian Rhino Vision 2020:

  • Launched in 2005, Indian Rhino Vision 2020 was an ambitious effort to attain a wild population of at least 3,000 greater one-horned rhinos spread over seven protected areas in the Indian state of Assam by the year 2020.
  • Seven protected areas are Kaziranga, Pobitora, Orang National Park, Manas National Park, Laokhowa wildlife sanctuary, Burachapori wildlife sanctuary and Dibru Saikhowa wildlife sanctuary.
  • Wild-to-wild translocations were an essential part of IRV2020 – moving rhinos from densely populated parks like Kaziranga NP, to ones in need of more rhinos, like Manas NP.
  • It is a collaborative effort between various organizations, including the International Rhino Foundation, Assam’s Forest Department, Bodoland Territorial Council, World Wide Fund – India, and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

About One- horned rhinos:

  1. Only the Great One-Horned Rhino is found in India.
  2. Also known as Indian rhino, it is the largest of the rhino species.
  3. It is identified by a single black horn and a grey-brown hide with skin folds.
  4. They primarily graze, with a diet consisting almost entirely of grasses as well as leaves, branches of shrubs and trees, fruit, and aquatic plants.

Protection Status:

  1. IUCN Red List: Vulnerable.
  2. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES): Appendix I (Threatened with extinction and CITES prohibits international trade in specimens of these species except when the purpose of the import is not commercial, for instance for scientific research).
  3. Wildlife Protection Act, 1972: Schedule I.

Performance of the Program:

  • Target of attaining a population of 3,000 rhinos almost achieved but the animal could be reintroduced in only one of the four protected areas planned.
    • The plan to spread the Greater one-horned rhino across four protected areas beyond Kaziranga National Park, Orang National Park and Pobitora could not materialise.
  • The translocated rhinos helped Manas National Park get back its World Heritage Site status in 2011.
  • 2018 and 2019 saw significant decreases in poaching, the results of forestry, local and national government officials coordinating efforts to combat wildlife crime across Assam.

Habitat of Greater One-Horned Rhino:

  • The species is restricted to small habitats in Indo-Nepal terai and northern West Bengal and Assam.
  • In India, rhinos are mainly found in Kaziranga NPPobitora WLS, Orang NP, Manas NP in Assam, Jaldapara NP and Gorumara NP in West Bengal and Dudhwa TR in Uttar Pradesh.


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