Peafowl, the Indian National bird, is protected under Indian Wildlife Act 1972. They are hunted for feathers, fat and meat. Though the transport, transfer and trade in the peacock tail feathers are exempted, the incidents of high mortality in some areas denote poaching. So, the project aims to provide awareness through street theatre/seminar/IEC for local populace. The project also aims to provide counseling for poachers with bank assisted alternate livelihood option for them.
Hunting of peafowl is prohibited, though the trade of feathers from natural shedding is exempted. But, in villages, poachers smuggle them to collect feathers. In the project district of Thoothukudi, poachers are abundant. The farmers poison them since they spoil their crops and demand compensation subsidy. The birds migrate due to conversion of their habitat for real estate and in search of water. The poachers are to be trained in alternate livelihood and provided assistance.
Peacock Protection Force (PPF) will be formed with representation from farmers, students and officials. Sensitization programmes for forest officials, ornithologists and farmers will be conducted along with interaction meeting between forest officials and farmers. Counseling and alternate livelihood training will be conducted for poachers and their interactive meeting with bankers will be arranged for providing loan. Small Peafowl habitats will be developed with water in select pockets.
Though the law provides protection for Peacock, the provision of exemption for feather trade is being misused by poachers. Through this project, the poachers will be identified and rehabilitated with alternate livelihood options. The villages level 'Peacock Protection Force (PPF)' will help protecting the bird, prevent poaching and discourage peacock habitat land conversion. The establishment of small scale Peacock habitat with water will discourage their migration into human settlement.