NASHIK: A fully grown Leith’s softshell turtle, a critically endangered species, sustained severe injuries after being hit by a tractor’s rotavator in the Dari Matori area on the Makhmalabad-Mungsara road on July 23. Nashik Forest Department (west division) rescued the reptile as it was in need of immediate treatment. The turtle’s shell cracked due to the impact and needed intensive care. The department handed the turtle to the Eco Echo Foundation for treatment and rehabilitation. Veterinary doctors Dr Sachin Vende and Dr Sandip Pawar successfully performed a critical surgery for almost two hours on the injured one. Ayush Pati, Sahil Birari, and Sherly Rekhi assisted the doctors in the surgery. As per the latest updates, the turtle is stable and responding well to the treatment.
During the monsoon season, the female turtles usually step out to lay eggs and thus, cross the roads to enter fields. These turtles are usually spotted on the riverside, and even though the reptile belongs to the critically endangered list, the Nashik district hosts a decent population of these species. Also, they step out at night. Therefore, drivers should drive within the speed limits to avoid these untoward accidents. - Vaibhav Bhogale, Wildlife Warden & Eco Echo Foundation’s member
Biodiversity conservation & policy change
The International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species is a critical indicator of world’s biodiversity health. Far more than a list of species and their status, the list is a tool to inform and catalyze action for biodiversity conservation and policy change, critical to protecting the natural resources we need to survive. The list divides species into nine categories: not evaluated, data deficient, least concern, near threatened, vulnerable, endangered, critically endangered, extinct in the wild and extinct. An IUCN Red List Critically Endangered species is one facing an extremely high risk of extinction in the wild.