Workshop on "Trends in Mangrove Ecosystem" 19th March 2010

The Mangrove Society of India had organized a field trip visit on 18th April 2010 to Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctury at Chorao (Goa0 followed by one day workshop "Trends in Mangrove Ecosystems" on March 19, 2010 at the Seminar hall of National Institute of Oceanography, Dona Paula, Goa. The MSI President, Padmabhushan Dr. S.Z. Qasim inaugurated the workshop while Dr.S. Baba, Executive Secretary, International Society of Mangrove Ecosystem (ISME) Okinawa, Japan gave a keynote address. About 100 participants were present for the workshop.

At the end of the workshop several recommendations were made by the members . Some relevant recommendations for Goa state are being sent for consideration and necessary action.

  1. Goa ahs a unique Mangrove Sanctuary- Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, which is close to Panaji city and becoming quite popular. It is observed that there is no mention of 'MANGROVR' in the name and thus reduces importance of mangrove. It is therefore recommended that this sanctuary may be renamed adding 'Mangrove word as "Dr. Salim ALi Mangrove Bird Sanctuary". This would enhance the ecological value of the sanctuary
  2. During the field visit on 18th of March 200, it was observed by many of the mangrove experts and lovers that some fishermen were exploiting large clams (Khube) from the mangrove sanctuary. It was the great concern that within the sanctuary limits (near the nursery) this type of activitiy is allowed. It is therefore recommended tthat all the wildlife sanctuary rule are applied and such exploitation of fishery resources is totally stopped.
  3. Mangrove play species may be declared once again (as was done earlier) as the protected species of Goa.
  4. More tourists (both national and international) may be attracted by reducing the entry fee from Rs. 50/- to Rs.10/-. The aim need not be earning money but to create awareness among the population.
  5. Better literature on mangroves can be prepared for the distribution.
  6. The existing information centre for the sanctuary is very shabby and looks like an office rather than "Interpretation". It is therefore recommended that nearby "gadda"/ shops may be shifted to some other place and the "Interpretation Centre, should include literature, slide show and trained personnel. All the major hotels may be given the information booklets on the sanctuary for distribution among the tourists.
  7. The workshop participants were informed on enquiry tthat the Goa state mangrove committee has not met for longtime. It is therefore, strongly recommended that this committee may please be reconstituted and meetings should be held regularly.
  8. Although on a smaller scale, but there are several cases of mangrove reclamation, deforestation and pollution in various areas of Goa. Mangroves are considered as forest and also protected under CRZ 1(1). It is therefore recommended that Forest Department should take necessary action for the conservation and protection of mangroves.
  9. Occasionally some field visits along with experts may be arranged for the public and students. Mangrove Society of India would be too glad to extend their expertise for such programme.
  10. In addition to dr. Salim Ali Mangrove Bird Sanctuary at Chorao, another such site along the Zuari estuary may be identified for conservation, recreation, awareness and also ecotourism.