|Most recent IBA monitoring assessment|
|Year of assessment||Threat score (pressure)||Condition score (state)||Action score (response)|
|2003||medium||not assessed||not assessed|
|For more information about IBA monitoring please click here|
The Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park, earlier called Wandoor National Park, stretches over 15 islands and islets in the Labyrinth Island group. Its boundaries run across the coast as well as inland. The Park encompasses a stretch of marine waters, with lush vegetated islands, vast coral reefs and beaches. Proximity to the equator ensures a hot, humid and uniform climate (Pande et al. 1991). The area receives rainfall from both the southwest and northeast monsoon. Maximum precipitation is between May and December, the driest period being between January and April. The flora is also extremely diverse, including stretches of protected mangrove forest that are among the largest in India (Pande et al. 1991).
AVIFAUNA: A scientific checklist of the birds of this National Park is not available, but Restricted Range (endemic) species are present in the Park (K. Sivakumar pers. comm. 2003). Stattersfield et al. (1998) have identified 13 species from Andaman Endemic Bird Area. Except for the Narcondam Hornbill Aceros narcondami, which is confined to Narcondam Island, 11 of these Restricted Range species are found in this IBA. Moreover, most of the endemic subspecies of the Andaman Islands are also reported from here, proving the importance of this site as an IBA. More detailed work is required to assess the full extent of the importance of this site for the over-all protection of birds of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
OTHER KEY FAUNA: There are no large terrestrial native mammals, but the marine fauna is immensely rich and includes four species of sea turtles, namely Olive Ridley Lepidochelys olivacea, Green Turtle Chelonia mydas, Hawksbill Eretmochelys imbricata and Leatherback Turtle Dermochelys coriacea. The Dugong Dugong dugon and the Saltwater Crocodile Crocodylus porosus are also present (Pande et al. 1991). There are many other endemic reptiles in Mahatma Gandhi NP which are found in the Andaman Islands, but the following have been specifically recorded from this IBA site: Andamanese Giant Gecko Gekko verreauxi, Andaman Bent-toed Gecko Cyrtodactylus rubidus, Tytler’s Grass Skink Mabuya tytleri, Andaman Cobra Naja sagittifera and Anderson’s Pit Viper Cryptelytrops andersoni (Anon. 2001).
Key contributors: K Sivakumar and Tara Gandhi.
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park (Wandoor National Park). Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 04/02/2023.