Why “Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park” in news?
For the year 2023, Director of Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park Jagdish S Bakan will win the Michel Batisse Award from the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) for his accomplishments in Biosphere Reserve Management. He will also present his case study during award ceremony in Paris, France on June 14.
Know all about Gulf of Mannar
• Designated as a Biosphere Reserve, the Gulf of Mannar is one of the biologically richest coastal regions in all of mainland of India. It is the first Marine Biosphere Reserve in the South and South East Asia.
• Location: It is located in Tamil Nadu, 160 kilometres from Dhanushkodi and Thoothukudi.
• This Marine Biosphere Reserve encompasses a chain of 21 islands (2 islands already submerged) and adjoining coral reefs off the coasts.
• Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park, established in 1980, boasts three surreal aquatic ecosystems – mangroves, seagrass, and coral reef.
• The intertidal areas are dominated by mangroves belonging to the Rhizophora, Avicennia, Bruguiera genus. Seagrass is another prolific species, about 12 species exist here.
• About 150 species of seaweeds to are found in the waters. There is one endemic plant, a flowering herb called Pemphis acidula on the parklands.
• Dugong, an endangered marine mammal, is the main attraction of the Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park. It has identified 117 hard coral species. It is home to a variety of vulnerable whales, including humpback whales, blue whales, and fin whales.
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