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|Title:||Sea mammals in marine protected area in the Gulf of Kachchh, Gujarat State, India|
|Authors:||Singh, H. S.|
|Keywords:||Sea mammal;mammal;coastal wetlands;Gulf of Kachchh;Marine Protected Area;dolphin;dugong;porpoise|
|Abstract:||Marine National Park and Sanctuary (collectively designated as Marine Protected Area or MPA) in the Gulf of Kachchh in Gujarat State has coral reefs, mangroves, sea-grass beds, mudflats, network of creeks and other ecosystems which supports rich marine life, including sea mammals. Although a total of 13 sea mammals have been recorded, only small mammals like dolphins, porpoise and dugong visit shallow water areas of the MPA during high tides to collect food. In this study, three marine mammals-common dolphin (Delphinus delphinus), porpoise (Neophocaena phocaenoides) and dugong (Dugon dugon) were counted. Common dolphin has relatively good population in the western part of the MPA but other two species-porpoise and dugong are very rare. The study reveals that about one third of the total area of the MPA in this zone support about 80 % of the marine mammals which visit the area during high-tides. Unlike central and eastern zones, the western zone is relatively free from developmental activities like ports, jetties, petroleum industries and other human activities. Thus, this part of the MPA is key habitat for dwindling population of the marine mammals.|
|Appears in Collections:||IJMS Vol.32(3) [September 2003]|
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