Species in News: Dolphin number dips in Chambal river


  • Recently the Madhya Pradesh forest department’s latest census report states that, the number of dolphins in Chambal river has been reduced by 13% in 4 years.

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About Gangetic Dolphin

  • It is India’s national aquatic animal and is popularly known as ‘Susu’
  • It is found in parts of the Ganges-Meghna-Brahmaputra and Karnaphuli-Sangu river systems in India, Nepal, and Bangladesh.
  • It is a highly intelligent freshwater mammal placed into the infraorder Cetacea.
  • It is among the four freshwater dolphins in the world. 
  • The other three are: ‘Baiji’ now likely extinct from the Yangtze River in China, ‘Bhulan’ of the Indus in Pakistan, and ‘Boto’ of the Amazon River in Latin America.
  • These four species live only in rivers and lakes.
  • It has rudimentary eyes and uses echolocation (through ultrasonic sound) to navigate and hunt.
  • Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary (VGDS) in Bihar’s Bhagalpur district is India’s only sanctuary for dolphins.
  • Protection: Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972-Schedule 1, IUCN-Endangered, CITES-Appendix I

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