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Dredging threat to turtle habitat

 


THE TELEGRAPH
Calcutta, India - 19 August 2011

Lalmohan Patnaik

Cuttack, Aug. 18: The world’s largest sea turtle nesting beach on the Orissa coast is in peril because of massive erosion over the past three years.

Wildlife activists are concerned over gradual destruction of the traditional nesting grounds of Olive Ridley sea turtles at Gahirmatha Marine Sanctuary following sand dredging at the Mahanadi river mouth.

According to the Wildlife Society of Orissa (WSO), Nasi II Island and Pentha beach, which were regular nesting sites, were being gradually and distinctly worn away. While Nasi II Island had almost vanished, the threat posed to Pentha by sea waves had prompted the Orissa government to plan beach protection projects. Unprecedented erosion had also been noticed at two other nearby turtle mass nesting sites — Ekakula and Agarnasi..


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