World Crocodile Day | UPSC
World Crocodile Day: Experts flag dip in gharial count in Odisha
WHY IN NEWS:
Only 14 gharials were spotted at Satkosia gorge in Tikarpada in state’s Angul district in 2019, claimed a former forest official
SYLLABUS COVERED: GS 3:Conservation of Biodiversity
For PRELIMS we have mentioned everything related to gharial and crocs ! Do not forget IUCN status . This has already been asked once in UPSC Prelims.
- Only 14 gharials were spotted at Satkosia gorge in Tikarpada in Angul district in 2019- Odisha forest department.
WORLD CROCODILE DAY
- World Croc Day is a global awareness campaign
- The aim is to highlight the plight of endangered crocodiles and alligators around the world.
- Every year on June 17th these amazing animals will be celebrated.
The Crocodile Research Coalition (CRC) will be spearheading the first World Crocodile Day in collaboration with The Belize Zoo, but this event is celebrated all over the world.
GHARIAL THE MOST THREATENED :
- Gharial is considered to be one of the most critically threatened crocodiles.
- Their habitat is threatened because of human encroachment and disruption of population through fishing activities.
- They are also genetically weak as compared to salt water crocodiles .
- “The gharial is not as dangerous as other crocodiles due to its long snout.
- They take 12 years to attend sexual maturity and feed on fish only.
- The construction of dams
- Irrigation canals
- Changes in river course
- Riparian agriculture
- Domestic and feral livestock.
- This was carried out wit the help of Gharial Telemetry Project and the Madras Crocodile Bank.
- Gharial crocodile project started in Tikarpada in 1975 with the aim to increase the sighting to five crocodiles per kilometre length of water.
IUCN STATUS :
THE ORDER CROCODILIA IS DIVIDED INTO THREE FAMILIES:
- Alligatoridae, composed of alligators and caimans;
- Crocodylidae, the true crocodiles; and
- Gavialidae, consisting of gharials and tomistoma.
The largest crocodile species : saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), with males averaging 14-17 feet long.
The smallest species of crocs are : Dwarf crocodile (Osteolaemus tetraspis) with males only reaching 4.9 (1.5m) feet long.
Currently, there are seven crocodilian species listed as critically endangered by the IUCN:
- These are the Chinese Alligator (Alligator sinensis),
- The Philippine Crocodile (Crocodylus mindorensis),
- The Orinoco Crocodile (Crocodylus intermedius),
- The Siamese Crocodile (Crocodylus siamensis),
- The Gharial (Gavialis gangeticus),
- The Cuban Crocodile (Crocodylus rhombifer), and
- The African Slender-Snouted Crocodile (Mecistops cataphractus).
- More real time tagging with use of technology can be done to save these animals.
- Monitoring and surveillance would also play a vital role in conservation.
SOURCES:DownToEarth | World Crocodile Day | UPSC
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