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A Fishy Tale with Aravind: A Workshop on Protecting Native Freshwater Fish Species



In a recent workshop at Sunnyside, Aravind Manoj, a passionate freshwater fish conservationist, took us on a captivating journey into the world of fish and their conservation. Aravind, driven by a deep interest in protecting native species, shared valuable insights and stories from his four-year career in this field.


Aravind began by discussing the different types of fish environments and the pond ecosystem, highlighting the importance of understanding these environments for effective conservation. He introduced us to a variety of fish species, including the Striped Snakehead, barbs, mudskippers, eels, and various local fishes, showcasing their ecological roles and feeding habits.



One of the highlights of the workshop was Aravind's discussion on invasive fish species, such as the Nile tilapia and Armoured Catfish, and their impact on native ecosystems. He emphasized the need for conservation efforts to mitigate the effects of these invasive species.



Aravind's presentation included stunning photographs of fish species and their unique behaviours, giving us a glimpse into their underwater world. He also shared insights into his fish photography techniques, showcasing how he captures these remarkable moments.


Pic Courtesy: Aravind Manoj

Furthermore, Aravind discussed his field research experiences, including conducting fish surveys in diverse aquatic ecosystems. He mentioned projects where he surveyed ponds in Siruseri IT Park (Chennai), hill streams in Sirumalai (Madurai Nature Cultural Foundation), and more, highlighting the importance of such surveys in understanding and conserving fish populations.


Aravind concluded the workshop by noting the lack of importance given to fish conservation compared to other wildlife conservation efforts. He stressed the need for greater awareness and conservation initiatives to protect our freshwater fish species.


Overall, Aravind's workshop was a fascinating and informative session that shed light on the importance of fish conservation. Aravind's patience and dedication were evident throughout the workshop, as he patiently answered all the questions posed by the kids, regardless of their complexity. His passion for protecting native fish species was truly inspiring, leaving us with a deeper appreciation for the underwater world and the need to conserve it for future generations.

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