- In its report, the CDA has cited the threats the project can pose to migratory birds, dolphins and fishes of Chilika lagoon
- Dwindling number of birds due to operation of seaplanes could lead to less deposits of guano which would affect biomass production and consequently the fish yield
- The nodal agency claimed that as dolphins are highly sensitive to sound their breeding cycle is likely to be affected
Bhubaneswar: The Chilika Development Authority (CDA) has warned that if the proposal to allow seaplanes to operate on Chilika Lake becomes a reality it would have serious consequences for endangered birds and other species endemic to the lake.
The nodal body, which had been entrusted with the task of monitoring the Chilika Lake, has submitted its report to the General Administration (GA) department giving a detailed view on the plan of the Centre to build a water aerodrome and seaplane facility on Chilika Lake.
The CDA has cited the threats the project can pose to migratory birds, dolphins and fishes of Asia’s largest saltwater lagoon.
About migratory birds, the CDA said, “With seaplanes operating in the region the paths of migratory birds and their habitat inside the lake are going to be jeopardised by the movements and sounds of seaplanes. The fascinating avifauna, the greatest attraction of Chilika for tourists, might be lost forever.”
The CDA maintained that the dwindling number of birds due to operation of seaplanes could lead to less deposits of guano which would seriously affect biomass production and consequently fish yield, posing threat to the livelihoods of the fishermen there.
The nodal agency claimed that as dolphins are highly sensitive to sound their breeding cycle is likely to be affected.
“The impact of landings and take-offs of seaplanes will endanger the exotic species and sound the death knell for the tourism industry,” CDA Chief Executive Susanta Nanda said in his report. The project is also likely to affect fish breeding leading to decline in fish output. The fish juveniles will also be threatened by the vibration and sound of the seaplanes.
On the issue of legality, the CDA chief executive said, “The provision in the Wetland Conservation and Management Rules, 2017, applicable to the Ramsar Site, prohibits conversion for non-wetland uses. Construction of an aerodrome is therefore prohibited under the rule.”