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Leopards in the Backyard

Rahul Shukla (Author)
Synopsis In natural history, the leopard has been the most debatable subject of all the beasts of prey. Some sportsmen described him as a slinking coward while others considered him a potentially dangerous game. This animal follows a lifestyle, contrary to the usual ways of predators. It does all that a sensible animal should not. It is as if the entire race is crazy, not following the laws of nature and predatory behaviour, but with a strange quirk in its genetic make-up and largely no satisfactory explanations available for its intriguing, seemingly antithetical ways. All this does not fit in place because the animal is a successful, adaptable hunter and can co-exist with civilizations advance to a remarkable degree, surviving even to this day with the shrinking edges of the wilderness. Dudhwa National Park and its closeby Kishanpur Tiger Reserve in Uttar Pradesh are one of the last surviving strongholds of Terai’s wild life. These perennial forests are a very special haven for tigers and leopards. Rahul Shukla belongs to a feudal family whose nearly fifteen villages are nestled in these jungles and many more ring its perimeter. One could never have availed such a splendid opportunity to observe big cats from close quarters as Rahul did for over thirty years. He lived here in his boyhood and roamed about these forests in the company of native hunters, watching their incredible ways of trapping and trailing game. In his early age he also accompanied family expeditions in which several tigers and leopards were invariably shot. How now serves as Honorary Wild Life Warden of the same area, and still gets ample opportunity to watch wild life whilst patrolling the forest. In this very personal book, the author tells the story of ‘Spotty, the Leopardess’, that he observed near his ancestral village Larti. Though a tragic tale, it provides new insight in the secret life of this endangered predator. It is marvellous, how efficiently the indigenous leopard utilizes the habitat to achieve and maintain its place in the scheme of things. Leopards in the Backyard is one of the most closely researched document on leopards of Terai in which Rahul Shukla evokes a special appeal for the wilds of India. It is a book, which combines elegant pictures with authoritative and intelligent text.
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About the author

Rahul Shukla

Dr. Rahul Shukla is Honorary Wildlife Warden of Shajahanpur, appointed by the Governor of Uttar Pradesh. He also looks after the Kishanpur Tiger Reserve, the Trans Sharda Complex of Dudhwa National Park. He is a member of the Wildlife Advisory Board of Uttar Pradesh Government and Honorary Member/Director of W.W.F. Projects, Utter Pradesh Chapter. His study on The Cane Field Tigers in Uttar Pradesh and the public service program of Saving Men from Tigers has helped to minimize the man-tiger confrontation in the Terai. The state government has acclaimed it as a path breaking experiment in wildlife conservation. It has earned Rahul many admirers and envious citics. He has written over two hundred articles on wildlife, nature and travel in reputed magazines and newspapers in India and abroad including in United States of Ameerica. He is a teacher by profession.

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Bibliographic information

Title Leopards in the Backyard
Author Rahul Shukla
Format Hardcover
Date published: 01.01.2002
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 9788176462457
length vi+184p., Plates; Glossary; References; 29cm.