Twenty nine dolphins from Upper Myanmar dead during thirteen years

Baby dolphins are seen jumping in the Ayeyawady River. Photo: wcs (Myanmar)
Baby dolphins are seen jumping in the Ayeyawady River. Photo: wcs (Myanmar)

As many as 29 dolphins were dead at the Mandalay-Bhamo Dolphin Conservation Area in thirteen years according to U Maung Maung Lay, headman of the villages from the community based tourism at Dolphin Conservation Area.
U Maung Maung started dolphin conservation activities with 72 dolphins handed over by his parents in 1984.
A total of 29 dolphins died between May 2005 and May 2018, of them 21 died of electric shock.
“My parents did make a list of dolphins’ death but a record made since 2005 showed that the number of dead dolphins 29. Out of them, I experienced 21 dead dolphins. Most died of electric shock, others died due to trapping in a net and aging” said U Maung Maung Lay.
Dolphin conservation was carried out in cooperation with Myanmar Wild Birds Conservation Group starting from 2014. In 2017, community based tourism was introduced and tradition of fish harvesting with the help of dolphins and fishermen is shown to foreign visitors.
“Local fishermen traditionally caught fishes with the help of dolphins. Now the Department of Fisheries and locals are jointly carrying out dolphin conservation but some did not abide by the rules” he added.
There were three newly born dolphins in Mandalay-Kyaukmyaung Dolphin Conservation Area, two in the Htigyaing-Shwegu Area and one in the Katha-Bhamo Area.
There were twenty-six dolphins in the Mandalay-Kyaukmyaung Area, 13 dolphins in Htigyaing-Shwegu Area and 37 in Bhamo-Katha Area totaling of 76 dolphins in the Upper Myanmar.—Min Htet Aung (Mandalay Sub-printing House)/Myanmar Digital News

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