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Gharial entangled in fishing net rescued by Odisha’s Nandankanan Zoo after many attempts

The gharial which was rescued by Nandankanan Zoo officials as it had got entangled in a fishing net (Pic. Courtesy Twitter/@ddnandankanan)

With the help of fishermen, the officials of the Forest Department rescued a gharial whose nose was entangled in a fishing net, close to Madhusudan bridge in Cuttack, Odisha. Interestingly, this is the second time this particular reptile has got entangled.

The gharial which is tagged with a satellite transmitter was released on December 2 last year in river Mahanadi. In that month itself, it had got its snout stuck in a fishing net. The creature was subsequently rescued by a group of officials and experts and assisted by fishermen in the river near Narasinghpur in Athagarh.

Within a week in the same month, the authorities were informed that the gharial had got entangled again in a net. The officials of Nandankanan Zoo, who are part of the gharial conservation programme in the river, were unable to get hold of the gharial to remove the net.

On two occasions they came close to trapping the reptile but failed and then finally their efforts bore fruit as they managed to catch it with the help of fishermen and remove the net from its mouth on Monday.

Talking to the media, Dr. Sanjeet Kumar, the Deputy Director of the Zoo said their team had a tough time in rescuing the fish-eating crocodile as it needed to be caught without being tranquilised. He added that since gharials have long snouts, they are prone to getting entangled in fishing nets due to which they get trapped and die.

He said: “Apart from sensitising fishermen, our team is constantly monitoring the movement of gharials released in the river with radio and satellite transmitters.”

Also read: Six tiger cubs welcomed in Odisha’s Nandankanan Zoo