South Asia

Published: Sunday 15 July 2007

declining fertility Low levels of fertility among Sri Lankan women will lead to a decline in the country's population after 2040, says a study by the Institute of Policy Studies, Sri Lanka. The country's population is 20 million now. It will reach 20.1 million by 2011 and could attain its peak of 21.1 million in 2031, says the study. There has been a continual decline in the Total Fertility Rate (TFR) registered between 1995 and 2000, it was around 1.96 children per woman but now it is well below the replacement level of 2.1. Government officials say family planning programme can't be the cause of this. They fear the low TFR could be the result of uncontrolled and illegal abortions, which are at alarmingly high levels.

Tb in elephants Tuberculosis has killed three Asiatic elephants in Nepal's Chitwan National Park, with 10 more suffering from the disease. The park is a World Heritage site.Fears are rife that the disease could spread among other wildlife in the park and affect local residents. Park officials say at least 10 of 100 elephants have contracted the disease in the past two years. But, they have neither the funds nor the expertise to treat them.

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