|Town/Region||South Andaman Islands|
|Categories||Fishes, Habitats, Marine|
|Date||15 May 2019|
This project is unique due to its geographical location and the species of interest. It is also the first project in India that will focus on elasmobranch nurseries and use methods such as tagging and mark recapture to study juvenile Sharpnose Guitarfish in their habitats. Data will be collected from landing sites in the south Andaman region to collect information on the impact of fisheries on the Sharpnose Guitarfish. In addition, through habitat surveys in nearshore locations, we will determine which habitats are being used as nursery grounds by this species and the driving factors behind this.
The results of this study will provide a foundation data-set on the population status of this species and improve our understanding of the benefits coastal habitats provide to juvenile Sharpnose Guitarfish in terms of growth rates, habitat selection, and protection from predation.
This project will serve as a foundation upon which we will develop future projects to further our understanding of sharks and rays, their nurseries as well as their ecological roles in the hope that this will eventually help us conserve them and the habitats they depend on.
These data will support and inform future conservation initiatives to protect the Sharpnose Guitarfish as well as the habitats they depend on. Because these habitats host vast seagrass beds which are known to serve as nurseries and important habitats for a plethora of marine organisms, their protection has conservation implications that extend beyond a single species.
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