World Crocodile day
Mon, 20 Jun 2022

World Crocodile day

  • Context: World Crocodile Day celebrated on 17th June, is a global awareness initiative to highlight the plight of endangered crocodiles and alligators.
  • According to the experts, countries in southern Asia need to pull efforts to conserve the region’s three crocodilians, especially the critically endangered gharial.

  • India is home to three kinds of crocodiles:
    • The mugger or marsh crocodile (most widespread and found in other South Asian countries too - Vulnerable; Schedule 1 of 1972)
    • The estuarine or saltwater crocodile (found in Odisha’s Bhitarkanika National Park, the Sundarbans in West Bengal and the Andamans and Nicobar Islands - Least concern; Schedule 1 of WPA, 1972)
    • The gharial (found mostly in Himalayan rivers - Critically Endangered; Schedule 1 of WPA, 1972)
  • Human-Crocodile Conflict: Humans enchroachment on the river banks with an increased tourism and urbanization are the primary reasons for increasing human-crocodile conflict in the areas like - Vadodara in Gujarat, Kota in Rajasthan, Bhitarkanika in Odisha and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
    • Sand mining, untreated domestic sewage and illegal fishing remains a major challenge to gharial conservation across southern Asia.
  • Conservation measures: The Crocodile Conservation Project launched in 1975, resulted eventually in increase of Saltwater crocodile population in India.
    • Transboundary cooperation is very much needed in south Asia. The gharial, along with the Ganges dolphin, was on the agenda of the CMS CoP13.


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