Puri: The Chilika Development Authority (CDA) and Forest department officials on Thursday began the annual dolphin census in Chilika Lake.
The dolphin counting kicked off at 7 am today with 80 enumerators grouped into 11 survey teams. Students from Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT), WWF personnel, wildlife experts, and activists are also in the teams.
The final report of the dolphin count in Chilika lagoon would be published after the experts prepare the final statistics, officials said.
Meanwhile, the plying of motorised boats of fishermen and tourist boats has been stopped for the smooth conduct of census drive.
In 2018, over 450 dolphins were sighted in the Odisha coast, including 162 in the Chilika Lake. The counting showed rising number of dolphins in the brackish water lagoon.
The dolphin census is carried out in the Chilika Lake as well as the 480-km long Odisha coast annually in the month of January-February.