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Saltwater or Estuarine Crocodiles in India

Saltwater or Estuarine Crocodiles in India mind map
Recent News:
January 2024:
Annual census in Odisha:
Total count: 1,811
Breakdown:
Hatchlings: 582
Yearlings: 387
Juveniles: 327
Sub-adults: 167
Adults: 348
Comparison with 2023:
Increase from 1,793
Human-crocodile conflict:
Recent incidents: 6 deaths
Conflict areas: Bhitarkanika, nearby areas
Travel distance: Up to 2,000 km
When:
Annual Census:
Conducted: January 10-12, 2024
Why:
Conservation efforts:
To monitor population
Assess conservation status
What
Census methodology:
Teams: 22
Segments: 51
Areas covered: All creeks, rivers in park
Habitat:
Found in:
Mangrove forests
Brackish waters
Freshwater rivers
Where:
Locations in India:
Bhitarkanika National Park, Odisha
Sundarbans, West Bengal
Andaman and Nicobar Islands
Who:
Involved parties:
Forest Department
Sudarshan Gopinath Yadav, DFO
Wildlife personnel
Trained local staff
Herpetologists
How:
Census Process:
Method: Direct sighting
Time: Winter (for sunbathing crocodiles)
Significance:
Positive aspects:
Species recovery:
Increased population
Conservation success:
Effective management
Challenges:
Challenges:
Human-crocodile conflict
Habitat destruction
Hunting for skin, meat
Way Forward:
Suggestions:
Enhanced conservation efforts
Managing human-crocodile interactions
Habitat preservation

Saltwater or estuarine crocodiles in India have seen a marginal population increase, with 1,811 individuals counted in Odisha’s Bhitarkanika National Park during the annual census of January 2024. This census is crucial for monitoring the species’ conservation status. The crocodiles inhabit mangrove forests, brackish waters, and freshwater rivers, primarily in Odisha, West Bengal, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The census involves direct sighting by teams from the Forest Department and wildlife experts. While the population increase is a positive sign of species recovery and conservation success, challenges like human-crocodile conflicts and habitat destruction persist. Going forward, enhanced conservation efforts and effective management of human-crocodile interactions are crucial.

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