Increasing �phumdi� threatens Manipur�s Loktak Lake

Rituraj Borthakur

Imphal, Feb 18 (PTI) Known as the only floating lakein the world, Manipur�s Loktak lake is facing a threat due todecaying vegetable matter, locally known as �phumdi'', floatingon the water in large amount.

The unique fresh water lake faced a threat to itsexistence due to infestation of the floating vegetable wasteas seen on satellite image, an assessment study by theAhmedabad-based Space Application Centre of ISRO pointed out.

The assessment was made on the basis of remote sensingdata of ISRO�s RESOURCESAT satellite acquired duringpre-monsoon and another during post-monsoon period.

The area of the wetland is 246.72 sq km, comprising largepockets of open water and marshy land formed at the southernpart of the Imphal valley up to the confluence of Manipurriver and Khuga river. Three other important lakes � Lkop Pat,Waithou Pat and Aongbikhong Pat � exist in the surroundingarea.

The southern part of the lake has been declared as KeibulLamjao National Park due to the presence of the unique dancingdeer locally called as �Shangai.�

�Wetlands are among the most productive eco-systemsbesides being a rich repository of biodiversity, and are knownto play a significant role in carbon sequestration,� the studysaid. .

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