1. Identify the place where an invasive seaweed named Kappaphycus alvarezii, is killing coral reefs?
Valai island in the Gulf of Mannar (GoM). Kappaphycus alvarezii, an invasive seaweed which smothers and kills coral reefs, has spread its wings to coral reef areas in Valai island in the Gulf of Mannar (GoM) and is set to invade new coral colonies in the Marine National Park. Gulf of Mannar (GoM). It is an inlet of the Indian Ocean, between southeastern India and western Sri Lanka. It is bounded to the northeast by Rameswaram (island), Adam’s (Rama’s) Bridge (a chain of shoals), and Mannar Island. The gulf is 80–170 miles (130–275 km) wide and 100 miles (160 km) long. It receives several rivers, including the Tambraparni (India) and the Aruvi (Sri Lanka). The port of Tuticorin is on the coast. The gulf is noted for its pearl banks and sacred chank (a gastropod mollusk).
2. Identify the state in which River Penna/ Pennar rises.
Karnataka. The Penna river rises in Nandi Hills in Chikballapur District of Karnataka and runs north and east through the states of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh to empty into the Bay of Bengal. The river basin lies in the rain shadow region of Eastern Ghats and receives 500 mm average rainfall annually. The major tributaries of the Penna are the Jayamangali, Kunderu and Sagileru from the north, and Chitravathi, Papagni and Cheyyeru from the south. The National Green Tribunal(NGT) has stayed the Godavari-Penna river interlinking projects due to lack of environmental clearance. The NGT has said that the project falls under the purview of Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
3. Identify the place where “Oussudu lake”, sometimes seen in news, is located.
Puducherry. Vulnerability assessment study conducted in Oussudu lake, Puducherry had shown concern over rising plastic pollution in water bodies. The report had highlighted that the canals have become dumping grounds for used plastic bags, thermocols, cups, plates, pipes and bottles. The Ousteri Lake also referred to as Oussudu Lake is a man-made lake situated about 10 km from Puducherry. It is recognized as one of the important wetlands of Asia by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN). The structure of the lake is complex consisting of water, wetlands and mudflats. Lake acts as the single largest catchment of fresh water in Puducherry. The vegetation of the lake (ranges from small herbs to trees) supports migratory avifauna as well as native birds during summer and winter.
4. Recently the outbreak of Nipah virus was seen in which State?
Kerala. Recently, Kerala has confirmed the outbreak of Nipah virus in the state. This is the second consecutive year when a Nipah virus outbreak has occurred in Kerala. Nipah virus (NiV) is a zoonotic virus (it is transmitted from animals to humans). The infection is generally transmitted from animals to human beings, mainly from bats and pigs. Human-to-human transmission is also possible, and so is transmission from contaminated food. The natural host of the virus are fruit bats of the Pteropodidae family and Pteropus genus, widely found in South and South East Asia. The World Health Organization (WHO) says the infection has been found to be fatal in 40% to 75% of the infected patients. There is no treatment, nor any vaccine is available as of now, either for humans or animals. Nipah virus was first recognized in 1999 during an outbreak among pig farmers in Malaysia. In India, the first outbreak was in 2001 in Siliguri. Another outbreak happened in 2007 in Nadia of West Bengal.
5. Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary, declared as eco-sensitive zone, is located in which State?
Gurugram and Faridabad (Haryana). Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) has declared an area of 1km around the Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary in Gurugram and Faridabad as Eco-sensitive zone. The Asola wildlife sanctuary has both floral and faunal diversity in form of. Wide variety of trees, shrubs, herbs and grasses. Large number of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, butterflies and dragonflies. Sanctuary comprises of Around 200 species of resident and migratory birds. Wildlife habitats inside the sanctuary act as water recharge zone for Delhi, Faridabad and Gurugram.