Bengal to get India’s first dolphin reserve

Kolkata, Oct 9 (IANS) India’s first community reserve to protect the endangered Gangetic river dolphins will come up in West Bengal, an official said here on Friday.

It would be set up in the Hooghly river and the methodology to develop the community reserve is being chalked out by a separate committee.

“The committee will take a decision based on inputs from all stakeholders since it’s a community reserve. We have not yet decided a time-frame,” Chief Wildlife Warden West Bengal and Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) Azam Zaidi told IANS.

According to a World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) factsheet, the Ganges River dolphin, or susu, inhabits the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna and Karnaphuli-Sangu river systems of Nepal, India, and Bangladesh.

Once found in thousands, there are fewer than 2,000 Gangetic dolphins left in the country in the entire distribution range along the Ganga and Brahamaputra river system.

It was declared as the National Aquatic Animal in 2010.

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