By K Venkataraman
The author is Former Director, Zoological Survey of India, Senior Scientific Consultant, National Centre for Sustainable Coastal Management, Chennai.
As per available data, there are 21,663 marine species in India, of which, 20,444 are faunal communities. However, in the absence of adequate documentation, the exact numbers are uncertain, and so is the status of India’s marine biodiversity.
Ameliorative measures to restore damaged ecosystem in India include transplanting corals at the Marine National Park in the Gulf of Kutch as a measure to restore coral ecosystem.
Bulk of the harvest in India is only from the natural seaweed beds of Gulf of Mannar Islands. The data on seaweed landings in Tamil Nadu reveal that the quantity (dry weight) exploited in a year is in the range of 102-541 tonnes for Gelidiella acerosa, 108-982 tonnes for Grcilaria edulis, 2-96 tonnes from G. crassa, 3-110 tonnes for G. foliifera and 129-830 tonnes for G. verrucosa (Silas and Kalimuthu, 1997; Ramalingam, 2000). Euchema cottonii has been introduced in the...