GOI UNDP Sea Turtle Project A significant proportion of world s Olive Ridley Turtle population migrate every winter to Indian coastal waters for nesting mainly at eastern coast. With the objective of conservation of olive ridley turtles and other endangered marine turtles. Ministry of Environment & Forests initiated the Sea Turtle Conservation Project in collaboration of UNDP in November, 1999 with Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun as the Implementing Agency. The project is being implemented in 10 coastal States of the country with special emphasis in State of Orissa. Total financial allocation for the project is Rs.1.29 crores.
The project has helped in preparation of inventory map of breeding sites of Sea Turtles, identification of nesting and breeding habitats along the shore line, and migratory routes taken by Sea Turtles, development of guidelines to safeguard and minimise turtle mortality, development of national and international cooperative and collaborative action for Sea Turtle Conservation, developing guideline plans for tourism in sea turtle areas and developing infrastructure and human resources for Sea Turtle Conservation. One of the important achievements have been demonstration of use of Satellite Telemetry to locate the migratory route of Olive Ridley Turtles in the sea and sensitizing the fishermen and State Government for the use of Turtle Exclusive Devise (TED) in fishing trawlers to check turtle mortality in fishing net. GOI-UNDP Wildlife Protected Area Management in Jaldapara Sanctuary, West Bengal Ministry also initiated another small project in collaboration with UNDP entitled Wildlife Protected Area Management in Jaldapara Sanctuary, West Bengal with the total financial outlay of Rs.86 lakhs.
The objectives of the project are updating and implementing an integrated management and ecodevelopment plans, enhancing capacity of State wildlife authorities to integrate and implement management and ecodevelopmnt plan along with strengthening and supporting the conservation measures taken by States by involving people. This programme has successfully implemented and has contributed in capacity building of wildlife staff as well as training of community representatives including women. It has also helped in preparation of micro-plans for 8 villages in the protected areas and initiating the same in other 20 villages. It has brought general awareness among the people for the wildlife conservation and have sensitised them for the wildlife conservation. Harmonious relationship between the wildlife staff and local people would ensure long term conservation of biodiversity. Once successfully implemented, it could be replicated in other protected areas also.
Indo-Russian Cooperation Ministry has also signed a protocol with Russian counterpart for conservation of migratory bird species between the two countries. It has been agreed to develop joint projects of mutual interest on migration and nesting behaviour of Siberian Cranes and common cranes and also to exchange scientific and official information on issues relating to wetland management, conservation of avi-fauna etc. Regional Meeting of International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) for South and South-East Asia. The Ministry hosted a meeting of Regional Conservation Forum of IUCN for South and South-East Asia on 22-25 March, 2000. The meeting was attended by South and South-East Asian countries in which various issues relating to nature conservation, sustainable development and control of pollution were discussed. This meeting has greatly bolstered the image of the country within the conservation fraternity