Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park

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Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park
IUCN category II (national park)
Jolly Boys Island 2010.jpg
Jolly Buoy Island, one of the 15 islands in the national park.
Map showing the location of Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park
Map showing the location of Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park
Location Andaman Islands, India
Coordinates 11°34′14″N 92°39′25″E / 11.57056°N 92.65694°E / 11.57056; 92.65694Coordinates: 11°34′14″N 92°39′25″E / 11.57056°N 92.65694°E / 11.57056; 92.65694
Area 281.5 km²
Established 1983

Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park is a national park of India in Wandoor on the Andaman Islands. Situated 29 km. from Port Blair, the park covers 281.5 km² made up of 15 islands and the open sea creeks running through the area. There is a chance for ecotourism on the islands Jolly Buoy and Red Skin which are open during some seasons offering glass bottom boats, scuba diving and snorkeling as a way to see the park's coral reefs and marine life.

History[edit]

The park was created 24 May 1983 under the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 to protect marine life such as the corals and nesting sea turtles prevalent in the area. It was placed under the protection of the Chief Wildlife Warden of the forest department of the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. The islands are uninhabited land although, per the 1981 census, there is a population of 3000 living in 8 adjacent villages.

Islands[edit]

  • Alexandra
  • Bell
  • Boat
  • Chester
  • Grub
  • Hobday
  • Jolly Buoy
  • Malay
  • Pluto
  • Red Skin
  • Riflemen
  • Rutland (parts of it)
  • Snob
  • Tarmugli (largest island)
  • Twins

Ecosystems[edit]

Most of the coral reefs in the park are fringing reefs. The type and composition of vegetation varies from island to island. Most notably there you can see a difference between the tourist islands which suffer more anthropocentric change and others which do not. There are also some islands more isolated or protected from the effects of weather in the Bay of Bengal. Tarmugli, the largest island, is covered with thick mangrove vegetation, sand covered beaches, uprooted trees and sheet rocks. Twins is an important breeding ground for turtles within the park.

External links[edit]