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Inviato da Wes von Papinešu on Maggio 30, 2000 at 22:20:18:
THE STATESMAN (Calcutta, India) 31 May 00 Turtles to the rescue of Gomti
Lucknow: Can the carnivorous turtles of Chambal cleanse the Gomti of its pollutants? If they can withstand the appaling contamination of the river waters, that will be the most-environment-friendly solution.
Encouraged by the scavenging knack and survival instinct of these amphibians, the authorities had translocated some of them from the banks of the Chambal for breeding at Kukrail near here on an experimental basis.
The district administration is now willing to spend Rs 6 lakh on the project. Under the district annual plan, money has been allocated for releasing this particular species of tortoise, called "katava", into the river. Their credentials? Turtles are not fussy about food.
However, to eat up the pollutants, only the carnivorous species has been chosen. The "katavas" are well-known consumers of bio-degradable matter. "Carcasses - both human and animal - drift down the river every day and these flesh-eating tortoises are the best environment-friendly option", a forest department official said.
The proposal by the forest department, which made a presentation when the Rs 27.47 crore district plan for the year was discussed, was approved, following the success of experiments on a smaller scale. The results were encouraging. The animals also loosen the earth on the river bank making things easier for other living matters.
"There was no negative impact of the operation and the tortoises which were released in the river earlier have survived and doing their job", Mr Sanjay Srivastav, a department forest official associated with the experiment said.
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