Orissa sets up camps to protect nesting turtles

October 28th, 2010 - 12:04 am ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, Oct 27 (IANS) Orissa has begun setting up camps at the Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary to protect the endangered turtles which visit the state’s beaches in winter for mass-nesting, an official said Wednesday.

The wildlife department has already set up 15 camps at various places of the site located in Orissa’s Kendrapada district, some 174 km from here.

The sanctuary is considered the world’s largest rookery of Olive Ridley turtles.

“The camps will start functioning Nov 1. More than 100 volunteers and officials would be engaged to ensure that turtles do not face any trouble,” Divisional Forest Officer Manoj Mohapatra told IANS.

“Their number will gradually increase to 300 during the period,” he said, adding that about a dozen mechanised boats and vessels would also be put into service.

Similar protection measures are also under way in two other turtle nesting sites in the state. They are the Devi river mouth in Puri district and the Rushikulya river mouth in Ganjam district.

While fishing is banned in the Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary area throughout the year, fishing activities will be banned near the other two sites from November to May, he said.

Around seven to eight lakh turtles arrive and congregate in the shallow coastal waters in Orissa in October-November and nest between December and March.

Every year, thousands of turtles get killed by mechanised fishing boats.

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Environment |