By Pathma Kumari and Hiran Priyankara
Wildlife conservators expressed concern about the death of a Dugong ( Muhudu Ura) in the sea off Kalpitiya. Range Forest Conservator Manjula Kumara Morathenna said the carcass of a Dugong a species of fish endangered with extinction, had been found washed ashore in Andankandiya in Norochcholai last morning He said this was the second Dugong found dead for this week.
The official was of the opinion that it had got entangled in a fishing net and died of injuries. He said the Dugong was a rare species of aquatic creature included in the Red Data book of animals endangered with extinction and protected by the Fauna and Flora Ordinance He said the Puttalam lagoon had been teeming with Dugong about 15 years ago but not reported recently until a carcass was found on March 06. .
Wildlife conservator Manjula Kumara said a tour guide and an environmental lover Malith Ishan Malka had noticed three male Dugongs and three female Dugongs in the Kalpitiiya lagoon in 2017, but the department had not received any information thereafter on them.
Prof. Sewwandi Jayakody of the North Western University said shoals of Dugongs had been reported from the sea off Mannar but haphazard activities of fishermen had resulted in their extinction. The wildlife Veterinary Surgeon Dr. Isuru Kottegoda was schedule to hold the postmortem examination.