Dolphins in Mumbai: Maharashtra government to conduct population survey of Indian Ocean humpback dolphins after 27 sightings in Backbay area of SoBo
Bombay, June 5: The Maharashtra Forest Department’s Mangrove Foundation said on Saturday that it would conduct the first-ever population estimate of dolphins in the coastal waters of the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). According to sources, the state government has decided to conduct a detailed survey of the 150 kilometer MMR coastline.
According to a report by the Hindustan Times, the decision to conduct a dolphin population survey comes after a pilot study by the Coastal Conservation Foundation (CCF) resulted in around 27 sightings of humpback dolphins in the Indian Ocean. The dolphins were spotted in the Backbay area south of Mumbai. ITBP mountaineers sing “Badri Vishal Ki Jai” after climbing the peak of Mount Abi Gamin (watch the video).
By law, dolphins are an endangered cetacean species and they are protected under Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972. During the CCF pilot study in South Mumbai, the largest pod of dolphins included six individuals. Interestingly, the study was conducted between April 14 and May 11 from Haji Ali Bay to Raj Bhavan in South Mumbai. The study also said that of the 27 sightings, 15 sightings were of pods that included juvenile and subadult dolphins.
Shaunak Modi, Founder of CCF, said: “While dolphins in this region have been documented and photographed before, this study has given us the opportunity to understand how they respond to environmental and human-induced factors in the region. “Thanks to this pilot study, it is too early to know how many dolphins there are and how this area is regularly used by juveniles, sub-adults and adults.”
During the study, Modi’s team collected environmental data such as depth, temperature, salinity, turbidity and tidal flow in addition to anthropogenic data which included the presence of fishing activities, whenever a pod or individual dolphin was sighted. The team also photographed fins in order to use them to build a catalog of fins that could form the basis of future long-term population studies. Layer’r Shot’s new body spray ad criticized for promoting rape culture, government orders suspension of controversial ads.
Virendra Tiwari, Senior Chief Conservator of Forests (Mangrove Cell) said: “There have been reported roaming sightings of dolphins along the coast of Mumbai from Manori, Versova stream areas to Nariman Point, Marine Drive, and towards Alibaug for quite a while now. However, no population estimates or habitat use analyzes have been done before. The study will begin after the monsoon across the MMR. These dolphins are also biological indicators, their behavior and the environmental conditions they are in. Surviving them will also reveal more details about the climate impacts they are exposed to and the interventions we can put in place.”
(The story above first appeared on LatestLY on June 05, 2022 at 12:36 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle , log in to our website latestly.com).