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World Turtle Day 2020

  • IASbaba
  • May 29, 2020
  • 0
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World Turtle Day 2020

Part of: GS-Prelims and GS-III – Environment; Biodiversity

In News:

  • The National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and Wildlife Institute of India (WII) celebrated World Turtle Day recently in India (23rd May, 2020). 
  • NMCG and WII are project partners in the ‘Biodiversity Conservation Initiative Phase II’. 

Important value additions 

World Turtle Day 

  • It is an annual event which is celebrated since 2000.
  • It is organised by the nonprofit Organisation – American Tortoise Rescue (ATR).
  • It aims to protect the turtles and tortoises from illegal smuggling, exotic food industry, habitat destruction, global warming and pet trade.
  • The theme for the World Turtle Day 2020 is ‘Adopt, Don’t Shop’.

Significance of turtles 

  • They provide habitat for an array of aquatic creatures like barnacles and other small crustaceans. 
  • They help to transport these species because they undergo long migrations. 
  • They also act as sort of an umbrella for fish that use them as shelter from predators.
  • Turtles play an important role in the river by scavenging dead organic material and diseased fish by controlling the water pollution. 

Status of turtles in India

  • Five species of Indian turtles along with their IUCN status are as follows: 
    • Olive Ridley – Vulnerable
    • Green turtle – Endangered
    • Loggerhead – Vulnerable
    • Hawksbill – Critically Endangered
    • Leather back – Vulnerable
  • They are protected in Indian Wildlife Protection Act of 1972, under Schedule I.
  • They are also protected under the Biodiversity Conservation and Ganga Rejuvenation programme.

The Wildlife Institute of India (WII)

  • It is an autonomous institution under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change.  
  • It was established in 1982.
  • WII carries out wildlife research in areas of study like Biodiversity, Endangered Species, Wildlife Policy, Wildlife Management, etc.
  • The institute is based in Dehradun, India. 

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