Berhampur: The annual dolphin head counting began at Chilika lagoon from Friday, forest department said.
The census is being carried out by 26 five membered teams of Chilika Wildlife Division, Chilika Development Authority, animal activists and other experts from forest and environment department. Counting would be done in the deep brackish water lagoon and up along the coastal beach and in Satapada area.
Similarly the counting of the marine Irrawaddy dolphins also began at the Gahirmatha marine sanctuary in the Bhitarkanika National Park.
Notably, Chilika which is the home for the Irrawady dolphins mainly also nests other species like rare Bottle Nose, Hump Back Finless Porpoise and Gangetic species only has seen a decline in the number of the beautiful mammal. Sources said there were as many as 144 dolphins flocked the waters while the year before that 157 dolphins were spotted in the brackish lagoon.