In News: Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, as Ranganathittu Bird sanctuary reopens.
Prelims: General issues on Environmental Ecology, Biodiversity and Climate Change – that do not require subject specialization.
GS Paper 3:Conservation,Environmental pollution and degradation,Environmental Impact Assessment.
- Ranganathittu Bird sanctuary is a combination of several mini-islets in the Cauvery near Srirangapatna, Karnataka.
- It got the status of bird sanctuary in 1940.
- The islets of Ranganathittu were formed during the construction of a barrier across the Cauvery between 1645 and 1648, by the then Mysore ruler Kantirava Narasaraja Wadiyar.
- The bird sanctuary is home to many native and migratory birds, and is considered a safe place for river otters, marsh crocodiles (muggers), and several species of fish.
- Recently, Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary was declared as Ramsar site becoming the first wetland of Karnataka to get designated as Ramsar site.
- “Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary is also known as ‘Pakshi Kashi’ of Karnataka as a lot of migratory birds from Africa and Siberia go there.The sanctuary has rare species of birds, fish among others.
Importance of Designating Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary as Ramsar site:
- Conservation of the ecologically fragile region: By designating the site as Ramsar site it will create more awareness among visitors and local people to conserve this region.
- It will promote wise use of wetlands: Now, the industry will think twice while discharging their effluents , and visitors will become cautious while littering around.
- Boost eco-tourism by supporting local livelihood :Since ,the site remains closed for a long time leading to loss of revenue. Now, the site is on a world map drawing visitors from all over the world. Hence, will boost eco-tourism.
- Help in mitigating changes in climate: Since the sanctuary has rare species of birds, fish among others. The recognition will help in conservation of the wetland.
What are Ramsar Sites/Convention?
- Ramsar Convention, which came into existence in 1971, is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources.
Number of Ramsar Sites in India: India has total 64 Ramsar sites covering an area of 12,50,361 ha in the country. Recently, India adds 10 more wetlands such as Koonthankulam Bird Sanctuary(Tamil Nadu), Satkosia Gorge(Odisha) ,Nanda Lake(Goa) ,Gulf of Mannar Marine Biosphere Reserve(Tamil Nadu) ,Ranganathituu BS(Karnataka) , Vembannur Wetland Complex( Tamil Nadu),Vellode Bird Sanctuary(Tamil Nadu),Sirpur wetland( Madhya Pradesh)Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary(Tamil Nadu),Udhayamarthandapuram Bird Sanctuary(Tamil Nadu) as Ramsar sites.
What are the criterias led down by Ramsar Convention to designate a wetland as Ramsar sites?
There are nine criterias laid down by the convention which need to be met to get Ramsar tag.A wetland should be considered internationally important if:
- Criterion 1: it contains a representative, rare, or unique example of a natural or near-natural wetland type found within the appropriate biogeographic region.
- Criterion 2: it supports vulnerable, endangered, or critically endangered species or threatened ecological communities.
- Criterion 3: it supports populations of plant and/or animal species important for maintaining the biological diversity of a particular biogeographic region.
- Criterion 4: it supports plant and/or animal species at a critical stage in their life cycles, or provides refuge during adverse conditions.
- Criterion 5: it regularly supports 20,000 or more waterbirds.
- Criterion 6: it regularly supports 1% of the individuals in a population of one species or subspecies of waterbird.
- Criterion 7: it supports a significant proportion of indigenous fish subspecies, species or families, life-history stages, species interactions and/or populations that are representative of wetland benefits and/or values and thereby contributes to global biological diversity.
- Criterion 8: it is an important source of food for fishes, spawning ground, nursery and/or migration path on which fish stocks, either within the wetland or elsewhere, depend
- Criterion 9: it regularly supports 1 percent of the individuals in a population of one species or subspecies of wetland-dependent non-avian animal species.
Source: The Hindu, PIB, Indian Express
1.The Hindu:- https://bit.ly/3KYUdH4.
2. Indian Express:- https://bit.ly/3B4QQde ;https://bit.ly/3xa3Kp5
3. PIB:- https://bit.ly/3QuFRPV