Sea Fans.- a massive haul.

5 December 2020.


In a joint operation of the forest vigilance squad of Assam and Wildlife Crime Control Bureau, a huge seizure of marine life has been made in Assam. Around 400 sea fans which is a type of soft coral, have been seized.  This trade has inter-state ramifications, coming from Mumbai and Goa through Hubballi.

What is the concern?

  • Corals are listed under Schedule I of the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972.
  •  Its possession or sale invites the strictest punishment under the Wildlife Act.
  • The sea fans are invertebrate organisms that grown in a fan like pattern and are found in shallow waters.

About Sea Fans:

  • Sea fans  are sold  as a “lucky charm”.
  • The coral, locally called ‘Indra Jala’, is in great demand and fetches good price in the market as people hang them on walls for luck,
  • Sea Fan is an Anthozoan.
  •  Anthozoan means flowering animals.
  • There are only 212 species of Anthozoans .
  • The Anthozoan species are threatened to extinction according to IUCN.
  • The Sea fans belong to the Gorgonian class of soft coral colonies.
  • Their inner skeleton consists of scleroprotein called Gorgonin and hence they belong to the class of Gorgonians.
  • Sea Fans are usually found in Bermuda, Florida and West Indies. They are present in shallow waters of all oceans.

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