Dr Rahul Kaul
An expert of international repute on pheasants, Dr Rahul Kaul is the chief ecologist at WTI. Over 10 projects on diverse subjects including species surveys and ecology, species and habitat recovery as well as wildlife trade, run under his calm and effective guidance. Rahul is a member of several national and international animal welfare/conservation bodies including the Central Zoo Authority, Pheasant Specialist Group, IUCN/SSG and so on.
An expert of international repute on pheasants, Dr Rahul Kaul is the chief ecologist at WTI. More than 10 projects on diverse subjects including species surveys and ecology, species and habitat recovery as well as wildlife trade, run under his calm and effective guidance.
Before joining WTI Rahul held the position of the Regional Coordinator of the South Asia Field Office, World Pheasant Association, for 12 years up to 2005. During his tenure, he initiated field study on status, distribution and ecology of Galliformes in addition to about 15 other research and conservation projects across South Asia.
Rahul began working for wildlife nearly three decades ago as a post graduate student in Zoology at the University of Kashmir, when he carried out biological surveys in Jammu & Kashmir. He went on to complete his PhD from the same University, studying the ‘ecology of Cheer pheasant Catreus wallichi in Kumaon Himalaya’.
“My interest in wildlife began after I attended an international conference on pheasant conservation, held in Srinagar,” recalls Rahul.
Since then, Rahul has designed and conducted numerous general biodiversity surveys as well as species surveys in India as well as abroad. He has studied the status of the endangered swamp francolin in Dudhwa National Park, Uttar Pradesh, and has conducted rediscovery surveys of the critically endangered Himalayan quail in western Himalayas, among others. In the international arena, he has carried out biodiversity monitoring in Nepal, established monitoring protocols for galliform birds conservation in Sichuan district in China, and has also carried out surveys for the grey partridge in Southern Ireland, while working with The Game Conservation Trust, UK.
He has also conducted Environment Impact Assessment (EIA) for power projects including the Allain Duhangan Hydel Project in Himachal Pradesh.
Rahul is a member of several national and international animal welfare/conservation bodies including the Central Zoo Authority, Government of India, Pheasant Specialist Group, IUCN/SSG, Partridge quail and Francolin Specialist Group. He was the co-chair of the IUCN/SSC Pheasant Specialist Group and is now the Southasia Representative of the newly-formed Galliformes Specialist Group. He is also a member of the Conservation Breeding Committee constituted by the Himachal Pradesh Forest Department.
He has authored an exhaustive number of publications. Among these are more than 20 scientific papers in national and international peer reviewed journals, wildlife reports, books, etc. Rahul has supervised many PhD students and regularly peer reviews papers for prestigious international journals. He is also on the editorial board of the International Journal of Galliformes Conservation.
Rahul recalls the creation of Kazinag National Park in Kashmir as a result of WTI’s activities as one of several achievements which gave him immense satisfaction.
Rahul likes to read. He also loves trekking and swimming. When free from his hectic schedule, he sometimes sketches, he says.