First underwater sighting and preliminary behavioural observations of Dugongs (Dugong dug on) in the wild from Indian waters, Andaman Islands

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E. Dsouza
V. Patankar


Sighting of Dugongs in Indian waters have become increasingly rare due to their declining numbers. Further, there have been no reports on underwater observations on dugongs in the wild from these waters. During our surveys in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, we sighted three independent immature sized dugongs. These individuals were sighted at Havelock and Neil Island and Kodiaghat in South Andaman Island. In this paper, we report dugong sightings, present preliminary behavioural observations and emphasise the need to initiate community based conservation along with monitoring of their habitats.

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Author Biographies

E. Dsouza

Elrika D’souza is currently studying ecological aspects of the Dugong and its habitat of the Andaman and Nicobar islands and is also co-researching a study on coral reefs of the Nicobar islands.

V. Patankar

Vardhan Patankar is currently studying Coral reef recovery in the Nicobar group of Islands and also co-researching a study on the Coconut Crab and Dugong