By Our Environment Correspondent
Noida, Nov 09 (IVC) The Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) has so far saved over 42,000 animal lives as part of its various conservation projects, Arinita Sandilya, Manager Marketing and Communications said in a statement here yesterday.
The main objective of the trust, established in 11998, has been to create awareness among fishermen encouraging them to release any entangled Whale sharks that may encounter and over the years, this initiative has yielded impressive results with fishermen successfully liberating seven Whale Sharks ensnared in their nets along the Kerala coast, the statement added.
WTI was established with a view to conserving nature, especially endangered species and threatened habitat in collaboration with communities a d governments.
Since 2018, the Trust has been actively engaged in Whale Shark conservation efforts along the coastlines of Kerala, Karnataka ad Lakshadweep. Besides saving forty -two thousand animal lives in 25 years, WTI has trained and equipped 20,000 frontline forest staff and rendered assistance to Government in creating 7 Protects Areas, sensitized 25 lakh children to conservation, protected almost 1200 sq.km of natural habitat including mangroves and coral reefs and rendered help to enforcement agencies in combatting wildlife crimes, the statement added. Marine Specialist of the WTI, Sajan John said “The ‘Save the Whale Shark Campaign’ has an overarching objective of fostering conservation awareness about these remarkable creatures among marine fishermen , local communities and students. Central to this mission is the reduction of accidental entanglements in the fishing nets , thereby facilitating the release of whale sharks back inti their natural habitat. To support these efforts, a dedicated mobile application has been developed to record instances of whale shark sightings and successful rescue missions, thereby informing future conservation strategies”.