August 10, 2019
State Govt collaborates on eco observatory for the Sundarbans
The State Forest Department, in collaboration with the Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research, WWF-India and Discovery India, has set up an ecological observatory for the Sundarbans, the first-of-its-kind for mangroves in India. It was launched on Thursday, August 8 by the Forest Minister.
The observatory consists of a laboratory, located at the campus of the Sajnekhali forest camp and a mobile data logger placed on a patrol boat.
As the boat traverses the creeks of the mangrove forest, the instrument will record the salinity, turbidity, temperature, and oxygen and pH levels of the water.
Samples collected will be analysed at the laboratory to unearth biological indications of water, including the status of microplankton.
The move to set up the laboratory is aimed at understanding the links between nutrient availability, salinity and bio-indicators to get an overview of the entire ecosystem.
Due to climate change, the water level of the Sundarbans is rising rapidly, leading to irreversible damages to the islands and their human, and its floral and faunal inhabitants.
Along with the inauguration of the laboratory, a floating protection camp – a vessel with forest guards to keep an eye on the mangroves – at Sarakkhali, a speed boat for the department’s South 24 Parganas division and fencing using nylon nets along 10km, to check incidents of straying of tigers, were also launched.
Source: The Times of India