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World Report View

Indus Dolphin: An Asian asset

by Zohaib Umer | 29-07-2019 15:47 recommendations 0 recommendations

Indus Dolphin, Platanista gangatica minor, that were originally seafaring in origin adapted freshwater river habitat about 50 million years ago. About a century ago, Indus Dolphin flourished a lot and occurred to be the hegemon in the aquatic ecosystem. Now they are curbed to about 700 miles stretches of Indus river only. This short article enlightens the threats being faced by Indus Dolphins with growing mankind activities.

Causes of endangerment:

1: Pre-1930 Indus Dolphins also called Blind Dolphins were dominant species in the river. Gradual increase in human population and mankind activities started disrupting the natural poise. After independence from British rule, the local government started constructing an irrigation system for agriculture. Many offshoots through river disturbed the flow of river and construction of First barrage SAKHAR barrage on Indus river isolated Dolphin species. With passing years many other barrages were constructed like GADDU, JINNAH, KOTRI, and TAUNSA. They happened to be the major ecological barrier for Dolphins.

 2: The second main factor was link-canals and poor irrigation system. Many dolphins strayed off the mainstream, stuck in canals and because of low water level they die. That was one of the leading factors in the reduction of Indus dolphin.
3: Another cause is illegal hunting of such species for meat, oil and as local medicine use. Accidental capturing in fishing nets has also aided in reduction.
4:Almost 1052 cities have been settled in the general route of Indus river. Industrial growth and over population has caused increase in aquatic pollution. Excessive use of plastic and industrial effluents ending up in the river  has caused a massive impact on reduction in Dolphin species.


In 2001, the lowest was presumed to be 1200, in Indus river and they were considered at the brink of extinction. Indus dolphin was enlisted as endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. According to the latest WWF survey, almost 1800 dolphins are present today.
WWF and the government censors in the hunting of blind dolphins put a brake on further reduction. Much more awareness to general public is needed for the conservation of this Asian asset.

Industrial effluents ending up in river stream


  • Pakistan Youth Zohaib Umer


Meena Pandey

  • Meena Pandey says :
    Great report!!!

    Posted 16-09-2019 01:59

Usha Amulya Narem

  • Usha Amulya Narem says :
    informative article. This would lead to more causes of water pollution and waste disposal measures. keep writing.
    Posted 11-08-2019 21:33

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