Conserving Otters as if People Mattered

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The first time I saw an otter in the wild – a Smooth Coated Otter in the Cauvery Wildlife Sanctuary – I knew this was the animal I wanted to see much more of. If you have seen an otter – any one of the thirteen species found across the World – you will agree that there is something charming, childlike and engaging about this mammal. Yet what really got me moving along an ottery path about a couple of … Read More

Otters in a Famous Tourist Destination

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Beaches and sunsets are what come to mind when most people think of Goa. This small state in western India has earned its reputation as one of the most favoured top tourist destinations. But very few know that Goa also has a rich diversity of flora and fauna. Much of the eastern rim of Goa falls within the Western Ghats (a global biodiversity hotspot). Goa has an area of 3,702 sq.km with several rivers spread across the state, all of … Read More

Illegal Sand Mining, Shimsha River, Karnataka

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This photographer made this image of illegal sand mining activities going on the Shimsha river bed near Kokkare Bellur (see location below). This could destroy the sanctuary for the Spot-billed Pelicans and Painted Storks which depend on the fish from this river.

This image of sand mining in the Cauvery river captures the norm rather than the exception: across the length of the river, and its tributaries (like Shimsha), sand is being gouged out at a pace that is hundreds … Read More

Gangetic River Dolphins Population Grows

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The population of the endangered Gangetic river dolphins have grown to 223 from about 175 last year. This was revealed in a census conducted by the Vikramshila Biodiversity Research and Education Centre (VBREC). Gangetic river dolphins are India’s national aquatic animals. They are poached regularly for their flesh and oil, which is used as an ointment and aphrodisiac. Their carcasses wash up on shore regularly. There are only 2000 river dolphins left, down from tens of thousands a few decades … Read More

Task Force Report On Gangetic Dolphins

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A state level (Bihar) task force on Gangetic Dolphin Conservation, headed by the “Dolphin Man of India” R. K. Sinha, will submit its report to the State Government in the next five to six months. R. K. Sinha is the head of the Patna-based Central University’s environmental department and also chairman of the Central government working group for dolphin conservation. The endangered Gangetic dolphin is India’s national aquatic animal, but faces the following threats:

  • Multiple dams and barriers disrupting free
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