The Curious Case of ‘Marked’ Hilsas: Researchers Implement Measures to Preserve Famous Bengali Fish


Hilsa, or Illish, a freshwater fish native to the Bay of Bengal, continues to be elusive to the Bengali commoner. The fish has made a mark in Bengali historical past, scriptures, and literature too. Now, nevertheless, fishermen have been coming throughout hilsas with ‘marks’ on them. The explanation behind this lies at a analysis institute.

The Central Inland Fisheries Analysis Institute has emphasised on the conservation of hilsa upstream of the Ganges at Farakka. The primary goal of the challenge is to protect the world the place the hilsa lays its eggs in the primary stream of Ganges in Farakka.

On the similar time, researchers intention to estimate the gap Hilsa travels north alongside the water. So, small hilsa fish are being caught, marked with a mark on its physique, and are being taken to the north of the Ganges with nice care owing to the truth that the fish will survive just for a short while when taken out of water.

The institute has alerted fisherfolk north of the river to report marked hilsas and are additionally promised a reward of Rs 200 per fish. An official from the institute stated that about 250 such hilsas have already been caught from totally different areas upstream of the Ganges.

India is the second largest producer of hilsa, proper behind Bangladesh. 5 years in the past, Hilsa manufacturing in India was 25 p.c of the world’s whole manufacturing. That manufacturing has now dropped to 10 p.c. In the meantime, Bangladesh’s manufacturing share elevated from 65% 4 years in the past to 86%. In keeping with hilsa consultants, the disaster of hilsa is because of catching of child hilsa earlier than it might lay eggs.

Subsequently, the central authorities desires to extend the testing of hilsa from Farakka to Allahabad via the Namami Ganga challenge.

The development of a brand new navigational lockgate at Farakka, already 250 meters lengthy and about 26 meters extensive, is nearing completion. The outdated lockgate was opened in 1986. Since then, the circulate of hilsa has been stopped. Consultants hope that with the introduction of the brand new navigational lockgate, the availability of hilsa will enhance upstream upto Allahabad. The opportunity of laying eggs can also be anticipated.

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