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ZSI monitoring climate change impact on Sundarban animals

Jul 3, 2015 12:13 IST

The Zoological Survey of India (ZSI) set up monitoring bases inside the mangrove forests of Sundarbans to measure the effect of climate change on flora and fauna of Sundarbans.

For this purpose, monitoring bases were established at 25 plots in the five islands of Bali, Gosaba, Basanti, Sagar and Satjelia.

These bases measure the diversity and population index of mangroves, crabs and snails. Apart from eight major mangrove species of the region, the bases also monitor pollination by insects like bees, beetles, butterflies and moths.

For collection of data about their population and species, a team of experts has been sent to the spot. Under the process for monitoring photographs of the flora and fauna will be taken and a GPS map of their habitat will be prepared, which will help in knowing the change in the region.

In the process, the impacts on animals are being monitored by ZSI, while Botanical Survey of India is monitoring the impact on flora.

Project in-charge scientist Bulganin Mitra said that any change in their population will reveal how climate change is affecting the islands. It will also reveal that to what extent the biodiversity is getting affected due to change in the water salinity level and other factors.

The three-year monitoring project is funded by the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.

About Sundarbans
The Sundarbans mangrove forest lies on the delta of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna rivers on the coast of Bay of Bengal. The UNESCO World Heritage Site is a home for several endangered species like the Royal Bengal Tiger, Ganges and Irawadi dolphins. The area is known for its wide range of fauna, including 260 bird species, the Bengal tiger and other threatened species such as the estuarine crocodile and the Indian python.

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