Wetland Conservation

Five more Wetlands added to Ramsar List

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Ramsar Wetlands

Mains level : Read the attached story

wetland

Introduction

  • Five more Indian wetlands have been added to the global list of wetlands of international importance under the Ramsar Convention, taking the total number of such highly recognised waterlogged ecosystems in the country to 80.
  • India is now the fourth-largest nation on the Ramsar map, trailing only behind the UK (175), Mexico (144), and China (82).
  • Tamil Nadu continues to have the maximum number of Ramsar sites (16) followed by Uttar Pradesh (10).

List of newly designated Ramsar Sites:

[1] Ankasamudra Bird Conservation Reserve (Karnataka):

  • Spread over 98.76 hectares adjoining Ankasamudra village.
  • A biodiversity hotspot with over 210 plant species, 8 mammals, 25 reptiles, and 240 bird species.
  • Vital nesting and roosting ground for over 30,000 waterbirds, including the Painted Stork and Black-headed Ibis.

[2] Aghanashini Estuary (Karnataka):

  • Covers 4,801 hectares at the confluence of Aghanashini River with the Arabian Sea.
  • Offers flood and erosion risk mitigation, biodiversity conservation, and livelihood support.
  • Sustains 6,000-7,500 families through fishing, agriculture, and traditional fish farming.
  • Acts as a natural barrier against storms and cyclones.

[3] Magadi Kere Conservation Reserve (Karnataka):

  • A human-made wetland spanning nearly 50 hectares, originally designed for rainwater storage.
  • Home to 166 bird species, including 130 migratory birds.
  • Sanctuary for vulnerable and near-threatened species like the Common Pochard, River Tern, and Oriental Darter.
  • A crucial wintering ground for the Bar-headed Goose.

[4] Karaivetti Bird Sanctuary (Tamil Nadu):

  • Encompassing 453.72 hectares, it’s one of Tamil Nadu’s largest inland wetlands.
  • Facilitates groundwater recharge and supports agricultural activities.
  • Hosts around 198 bird species, including the Bar-headed Goose and Common Teal.

[5] Longwood Shola Reserve Forest (Tamil Nadu):

  • Named after “Solai,” meaning tropical rainforest in Tamil.
  • Integral to the Western Ghats’ unique biodiversity.
  • Provides sanctuary to globally endangered and vulnerable bird species like the Nilgiri Laughing Thrush, Nilgiri Blue Robin, and Nilgiri Wood-pigeon.
  • Home to 14 of the 26 endemic bird species of the Western Ghats.

Back2Basics: Ramsar Convention

Explanation
Purpose International treaty aimed at conserving and promoting the sustainable use of wetlands.
Establishment Established on February 2, 1971, in Ramsar, Iran.
Participating Countries 171 contracting parties (countries) as of September 2021.
India and Ramsar Convention The first Ramsar Site in India, the Chilika Lake in Odisha, was designated in 1981.

 

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