Kendrapara, December 14 (LocalWire): Carcasses of three Irrawaddy dolphins including a calf were washed ashore on the beach at Pentha within Gahiramatha marine sanctuary of Kendrapara district on Saturday.
“The dolphins were perhaps hit by some ships or fishing vessels in the sea and after their death, the bodies were washed ashore. All three dead marine mammals were Irrawaddy dolphin.
These dolphins are found in Chilika lake,” the marine sanctuary forest range officer Debashis Bhoi said.
Dolphins fall in Schedule I of Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and have been declared an endangered species under the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the forest officer stated.
“Every year some dolphins die off the coast after getting trapped in trawling and other nets.
Studies have proven the high intelligence of dolphins and it is clear that these mammals are aware of this danger, but are left with little choice due to their need to search for food around the trawlers or boats,” he said.
Five of the dolphin species seen in sea waters are the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin, the common dolphin, the spinner dolphin, Irrawaddy, and the bottle-nosed dolphin.
Freshwater dolphins are also found felt in the Ganges in northern and eastern India.
Humpback, Irrawaddy, and Bottle Nose dolphins are now found in Mahanadi river mouth, Gahiramatha marine sanctuary, Jatadhari river mouth and other areas near Paradip.
The forest officials during the dolphin census, this year have sighted 126 dolphins in the water bodies of Gahiramatha marine sanctuary, the forest officer said.
When contacted, noted dolphin researcher Dipani Sutaria said, “The reports of Irrawaddy dolphins in Gahiramatha are few and the death of two females and a calf is very sad and a cause of concern for the species ranges in India, outside Chilika Lake. The calf seems to have got aborted on the death of its mother.”