10 held for fishing near turtle nesting site

January 8th, 2011 - 4:40 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, Jan 8 (IANS) Ten fishermen were arrested for fishing near the prohibited area of the Gahirmatha turtle nesting site in Orissa’s Kendrapada district, an official said Saturday.The men were fishing using a mechanised trawler near the Gahirmatha marine sanctuary, about 175 km from here, Friday evening.

“Police and wildlife officials arrested them. The fishermen will be produced before a local court,” Divisional Forest Officer (wildlife) Manoj Mohapatra told IANS.

He said the trawler was seized.

Gahirmatha is one of the world’s largest turtle nesting sites, where 700,000-800,000 endangered Olive Ridley turtles arrive and congregate in the sea waters between October and November and nest between December and March.

Thousands of turtles get killed every year mostly by mechanized trawlers. The Orissa government has imposed a seven-month fishing ban along 120 km of the state’s 480 km coastline from Nov 1 to May 31.

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