105 turtles and 1050 fishes rescued from a 100-year-old pond in Vasai
Earlier this month, Mayur Kamath, a resident of Vasai visited an ancient temple in his vicinity. Upon his visit he came across a 100-year-old pond which had dried up because of the searing heat. But the pond was still home to marine life which was on the verge of dying.
Saddened by their plight, Kamath – who is a naturalist and a member of Wildlife Images and Reflections NGO, approached the temple authorities to in a bid to save their lives.
The rescue operation was scheduled in two batches. Local fishermen, forest officials, members of Wildlife Conservation & Animal Welfare Association along with volunteers from Kamath’s NGO jointly carried out both rescue operations.
The first rescue operation, conducted on April 6, resulted in saving the lives of 1000 local fishes, 50 big fishes (including those kept in aquariums), 41 Indian turtles and 30 exotic turtles.
During the second rescue operation, conducted on April 17, 44 more turtles- 32 Indian and 12 exotic were rescued.
All the indigenous species were later released into the wilderness. However, the exotic ones were kept separately as the law prohibits them from being released. The exotic species will be released in the pond after it gets filled post monsoon.
The rescue operations lasted for over 10 hours each and saved the lives of over 1000 fishes and 100 turtles.