Once upon a time outskirts of Kolkata were very green and wild. Some generations of that era are still lurking behind whatever that is left of the foliage. In some parts of Salt Lake and greenery behind Airport one can hear wild call of the jackals at night. There may be more of them in other further outskirts of the metro. As the green patches slowly vanishes one wonders where will they go? Is this the last generation calling out to the moon? When will techno savvy human beings leave some place for other animal life to survive and breed?
Amazingly these jackals never disturb the humans. They live off the leftovers spilled by humans and whatever small animals and birds they can catch. Known as ‘sly’ animals but they can be more appropriately called ‘shy’ animals. Human beings have forever hounded and hunted them. But I never heard any where about these animals harming human beings. They just walk away and disappear in their holes at the slightest sign or sound of approaching feet. As the famous legend of ‘Belstone Fox’ goes (which was made into a film) they do get acquainted with human movements and learn to elude them in smarter ways!!! They attack only if threatened of immediate physical harm.
Will we ever spare a small thought for them and their habitat before turning city outskirts into concrete jungle? This planet is as much theirs as ours; can’t we preserve their habitat which consists of a small water body and green foliage with singing birds as our backyard? Mind you this will be a peaceful haven not only for them but a symbiotic ecosystem for all of us and can offer a practical insight to school kids who struggle with environment education compulsory lessons. We need to save small animals and birds for our next generation and we need their next generation to save our planet.