What is the Gulf of Mannar?

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What is the Gulf of Mannar? Blog Image

Overview:

A recent study concluded that coral cover in the Gulf of Mannar region had declined from 37% in 2005 to 27.3% in 2021.

About Gulf of Mannar

  • Along the southeast coast of India lies the Gulf of Mannar, a part of the Laccadive Sea of the Indian Ocean, containing 21 islands.
  • It spans a total distance of around 125 miles in breadth and 100 miles in length between the northwest coast of Sri Lanka and the southeast coast of India. 
  • It is bounded to the northeast by Rameswaram (island), Adam’s (Rama’s) Bridge (a chain of shoals), and Mannar Island.
  • It receives several rivers, including the Tambraparni (India) and the Aruvi (Sri Lanka).
  • The port of Tuticorin is on the Indian coast. The gulf is noted for its pearl banks and sacred chank (a gastropod mollusk).

Key facts about the Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park

  • The Gulf of Mannar is one of the biologically richest coastal regions in all of the mainland of India.
  • It is the first Marine Biosphere Reserve in South and South East Asia.
  • In India, the Gulf of Mannar region in Tamil Nadu is one of the four major coral reef areas, and the others are the Gulf of Kutch in Gujarat, Lakhsadweep and Andaman and Nicobar Islands. 
  • It is designated as a Biosphere Reserve.
  • This Biosphere Reserve encompasses a chain of 21 islands (2 islands already submerged) and adjoining coral reefs off the coasts of the Ramanathapuram and Tuticorin districts.

Q1) What is a Gulf?

The Gulf is a portion of the sea that is almost surrounded by land except one narrow opening. Gulfs are formed when a giant rock collapses or when a piece of land sinks. This causes a big indentation in the area, and the water eventually fills it up. Gulfs are also formed through a natural process of erosion.

Source: Live Coral cover in Gulf of Mannar down to 27%