SunstarTV Bureau: The population of dolphins in Chilika has increased to 156 in 2020 against 150 in 2019, during the annual survey conducted on January 15, 2021 by “Transact Survey Method”, followed worldwide for population of aquatic mammals.
The Chilika Development Authority (CDA) conducted an annual survey on the biodiversity of the lagoon, which is the largest lake along the east-coast of India.
After emerging as the favourite destination of migratory birds, the Chilika lake in Odisha has also turned out to be a safe haven for rare Irrawaddy dolphins.
The Irrawaddy dolphin is the flagship species inhabiting the Chilika Lake. The CDA in a statement said that the present distribution range of this species is only in Asia, from Chilika to Indonesia. Irrawaddy dolphins in India are protected under the Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972, ClTES (Appendix-l) and IUCN Red List.
CDA chief executive Susanta Nanda said, “The CDA has initiated many conservation measures for the protection and conservation of Irrawaddy dolphins in the past in close coordination with the Wildlife Wing of state Forest Department.”