By U. Sudhakar Reddy
Marine animals like blue whales and dolphins are facing a serious threat to their existence along India’s coasts and seas.
Joining this endangered group is the Olive Ridley turtles found in Srikakulam in AP.
A Greenpeace report, Identifying Conservation Needs in India’s Offshore Waters said it has identified 51 points of occurrence (habitats) of marine mammals and sea turtles in the Indian Exclusive Economic Zone. The report said that activities like deep sea fishing are likely to increase pressure on these habitats.
“Marine mammals and sea turtles deserve attention as they are vulnerable. A tracking study is needed to determine migratory patterns and deep sea reserves. Regulations giving data on species distribution and ranges should be made. Measures to set aside safe areas and corridors have to be incorporated into project plans,” the report said.
State Biodiversity Board chairman Dr R. Hampaiah said the focus must shift to marine diversity protection.