Turning the turtle's fate
ORISSA'S southern coast was recently the
scene of hectic activity as thousands of
Olive Ridley sea turtles nested there en
masse. The turtles, which figure in the
list of endangered species, nested at
the Rushikulya rivermouth in Ganjam
district. This spectacular event, when
turtles congregate for nesting, is called
arribada, or arrival in Spanish.
The Wildlife Institute of India,
Dehra Dun, and the Forest Department
of the Orissa government have set up a
field research station in Ganjam to
study the turtle's behaviour. Care is also
being taken to protect the nests laid on
the beach. The world's largest sea
turtle - lepidochelya ofivacea also
nests at the Orissa coast near the
l3hitarkanika wildlife sanctuary in
As the Rushikulya rivermouth
has become a major breeding and nest-
ing ground for these turtles, wildlife
experts have suggested that this area
be declared a wildlife sanctuary or a
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