Skip to main content

Biodiversity resilience in the Central Indian Highlands is contingent on maintaining and recovering landscape connectivity: the tiger as a case study




  • Seidensticker, John


  • Corridors (variably called landscape linkages, connectors, and gateways) are expanses of a landscape that facilitate the flow or movement of individuals, genes, and ecological processes. Protected areas with their buffer zones and the corridors that connect them are cornerstones of modern conservation actions to maintain the biodiversity we have and restore what we have lost. Policy and governance to guide the establishment and management of protected areas and supporting buffer zones is well established in the Central Indian Highlands. A policy and governance structure to create the context and enabling conditions for corridor maintenance, creation, and recovery is emerging but is constrained by the reigning land-management paradigm that separates conservation from development rather than mainstreaming species and habitat conservation into the rural development agenda. Well-nourished, healthy human populations and healthy ecosystems are inextricably linked. The worsening ecological conditions in the Central Indian Highlands can trigger the emergence of a common agenda for an inclusive, caring, and environment-friendly mode of development. The alternative is the business-as-usual scenario: a continuation of worsening ecological conditions. Entry points through the biodiversity, agriculture production, resource extraction, and economic/social sectors to enable integrated sustainable landscape management are identified. These include deepening what it means to successfully conserve a species combined with explicit threat analysis for at-risk tigers and the landscapes that supports them; landscape scenario modeling to advance communication by synthesizing diverse forms of research and articulating and evaluating alternative socio-economic futures; and the use of the smart green infrastructure process as an approach to development rather than only as a way to mitigate environmental damage. Models are presented to scale up from isolated conservation interventions to collective impact that unites supportive government partners with individuals, NGOs, and economic interests to achieve viable long-term relationships in human and natural systems to value, maintain, and recover landscape connectivity.

Published In

Publication Date

  • 2015



Digital Object Identifier (doi)

Additional Document Info

Start Page

  • 167

End Page

  • 179


  • 16


  • 1