A 22 feet whale shark was rescued by the local fishermen and the Forest Department here in Vizag on 22 March 2022. 40 fishermen who were fishing near the Tantadi Village coast spotted a large whale shark entangled in fishing nets as it tried to feed on the fish inside. The Forest Department was immediately informed, upon which a team was sent to the rescue of the whale shark near the coast of Vizag.
Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Anant Shankar lead the team along with the local fishermen and rescued the whale shark in a span of 3 hours. The whale shark which made its way out during low tide was found stuck in the nets at around 2 pm on Tuesday. As per the instruction provided by the DFO, a rope was gently tied around the whale shark with the help of two boats, and the fishermen assisted the shark back into the sea.
The fishing net has been reported completely damaged, amounting to ₹ 25,000. The Forest Department has pledged to reimburse and reward the fishermen for their loss and bravery. The authorities appreciated the efforts and quick action of the fishermen towards rescuing the endangered shark. The total operation was completed within 4 hours, under the expert guidance of department official, M. Srikanth.
The DFO on this situation said, ” It is heartening to see awareness generating among the fishermen and sensitivity towards conservation of protected marine species. Forest Department will keep continuing its efforts to raise such awareness among the public and the fisher community and will try to keep engaging them in conservation-related activities.”
Previously, similar rescue operations were successfully conducted to protect the whale shark by the Forest Department in Vizag. A total of two endangered sharks have been rescued within two months near the Vizag coast.
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