As many as 110 Gangetic dolphins have been sighted by officials while mapping the River Ganges along a 90-km stretch between Kaushambi and Handia in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, according to The Hindustan Times newspaper.
That’s an exhilarating piece of news, considering the fact that the numbers of the long-snouted aquatic mammals has been dropping like a rock and they have been forced near extinction by increasing river pollution, fishing and lately the dredging work to make the Ganges a national waterway.
Last year, a project funded by TheThirdPole.net failed to sight even a single Gangetic dolphin, one of the four freshwater dolphins in the world, after scouring a 67-km stretch of the river in the the Vikramshila Gangetic Dolphin Sanctuary in the state of Bihar.
The latest sightings in Uttar Pradesh may be attributed to efforts to clean up the river, according to a government official cited by the Hindustan Times. The local authorities shut 24 drains discharging sewer water into the river and opened six sewer treatment plants.