The Ganges River Dolphin
The Ganges River Dolphin, Platanista Gangetica is a nearly blind, mysterious freshwater mammal inhabiting the rivers and streams of Bangladesh, India, and Nepal. Due to extreme habitat encroachment, and a plethora of anthropogenic threats within their watersheds the Ganges River Dolphin is considered Endangered by IUCN.
In Nepal, many of these freshwater cetaceans take on a risky trans-boundary journey during the monsoon season across the Indian border. Unable to see, the dolphin’s super impressive adaptation of echolocation allows them to forage, communicate, and move through the murky waters. With the increasing presence of dams, irrigation canals, and the rapid development in the region, the risks posed to the species are increasing.
According to recent studies in collaboration with DCC, during the high volume levels of the 2014 monsoon the population in the Karnali-Mohana River system contains 12 individuals, with a frequent sighting of juveniles and newborns. Such news gives the species promise of replenishing to sustainable numbers. Check out the following article noting a doubling in abundance over the past two decades -
Click here to view Number of freshwater dolphins doubles in two decades: Study
Threats to the Ganges River Dolphin and Their Freshwater Ecosystem
• Hydroelectric Projects
• Irrigation Canals
• Over Fishing
• Poison Fishing
• Electrocution Fishing
• Non-point Source Pollution
• Point Source Pollution
• Noise Pollution
• Climate Change
What is DCC Doing?
The Dolphin Conservation Center is focusing on educating the locals of the region on the importance of river dolphin through delivering interpretive educational programs to youth, adults, and governmental officials on the vitality of the species for the freshwater ecosystem.
Since DCC’s establishment, its primary focus is on education, and providing a space for shared data, and research in the region.
While working alongside wildlife biologists and conservationists in the region, DCC lobbies and establishes a strong rapport with government officials, INGOs, and the industry who hold influence on the state of the in-situ population of Ganges River Dolphin in Nepal.
How Can You Help?
Our main branch is just outside of Bardia National Park in Dunghana Tole. During the monsoon season, the dolphins create quite a spectacle! If you’re touring Nepal, a trip out West will be well worth it, as our main branch office is surrounded by immense biodiversity, from hornbills, swamp deer, mugger crocodiles, to river dolphin. GangesRiverDolphin@gmail.com
Education and conservation are both sectors of creativity and ambition. Send us your photos of Ganges River Dolphin to be published on our website. Teachers, encourage your students to create Naturalist Journals and submit their illustrations of Ganges River Dolphin. GangesRiverDolphin@gmail.com
Protect the Ganges River Dolphin through contributing to our educational programs or plant a tree in the river’s riparian zone in honor or memory of a loved one. If you are interested, contact us now. GangesRiverDolphin@gmail.com