Denotify turtle nesting site in Andaman for shipment project: Wildlife board - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Denotify turtle nesting site in Andaman for shipment project: Wildlife board

ByJayashree Nandi
Jan 28, 2021 10:28 AM IST

The National Board for Wildlife has suggested the implementation of a mitigation plan to facilitate nesting of turtles as well as connectivity between the Galathea river and the Bay of Bengal

The National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) has recommended the de-notification of Galathea Bay Sanctuary, an important nesting site of leatherback sea turtles in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, with certain riders after local authorities submitted a proposal for it to the Union environment ministry citing an international shipment project. It has suggested the implementation of a mitigation plan to facilitate nesting of turtles as well as connectivity between the Galathea river and the Bay of Bengal.

The coast line of south Andaman Island near Port Blair. (File photo)
The coast line of south Andaman Island near Port Blair. (File photo)

The International Union for Conservation of Nature lists leatherback turtles among the vulnerable species as their numbers are decreasing. Extremely vulnerable to temperature extremes, the leatherback turtles are the world’s largest turtles and the only species without scales and a hard shell. They are named after their tough rubbery skin and have existed in their current form since the age of the dinosaurs. Leatherbacks are migratory and some of them swim over 10,000 miles a year between nesting and foraging grounds, according to the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration.

Now catch your favourite game on Crickit. Anytime Anywhere. Find out how

“The mitigation plan needs to be developed through a detailed study so that marine turtles continue to nest on the beaches near the Galathea Bay during both the construction as well as operational phases of the international shipment project,” according to the minutes of an NBWL meeting held on January 5. The minutes have been published on the ministry’s website.

The minutes say the Andaman and Nicobar Islands administration sought to declare Galathea Bay as a sanctuary over an area covering 11.44 square km through a notification dated September 15, 1997, under the Wildlife (Protection) Act. Another notification was issued on October 14, 1997, for initiating its acquisition, but the final notification for the sanctuary has not yet been issued.

The minutes say the Andaman and Nicobar Islands administration had sought an opinion from the law ministry on the matter. The ministry suggested that the de-notification of the sanctuary is not needed and that the notification on the intention to declare Galathea Bay as a sanctuary is void because the rights were not settled within two years.

Also read | Wildlife Board nod to rail tracks through protected Western Ghats

“After discussions, the standing committee decided to recommend the proposal with the recommendations of Wildlife Institute of India, chief wildlife warden and directed that a comprehensive management plan may be prepared and followed by the Andaman and Nicobar administration for conservation and protection of leatherback turtles in Great Nicobar Islands along with the Wildlife Institute of India and the project proponents. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands Administration shall bring more areas under conservation of leatherback turtles.”

Kartik Shanker, an associate professor at the Indian Institute of Science’s Centre for Ecological Sciences, said Galathea nesting beach is one of the most important nesting beaches for leatherback turtles. “Great Nicobar Island and Little Andaman Island host the largest nesting population of leatherback turtles in the central or northern Indian Ocean. Galathea is one of the few leatherback sites monitored over the last 30 years and is an iconic beach for leatherback nesting. Any development that impacts these nesting beaches will have an adverse impact on the population.”

Catch every big hit, every wicket with Crick-it, a one stop destination for Live Scores, Match Stats, Quizzes, Polls & much moreExplore now!

See more

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Saturday, June 15, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On