This activist has been working since 1996 to save endangered turtles in Odisha’s Gundabala region

Since 1996, Bichitranand Biswal, well-known as Bichi Bhai, has saved millions of Olive Ridley turtles from poachers.

Marine life is in danger and with depleting icebergs and continuous onshore drilling, water bodies have turned into a dump yard for human beings. Bichitranand Biswal hailing from the Gundabala region in Odisha state, has since 1996, being striving to save Olive Ridley turtles from extinction.

Biswal is vigilant round the clock and keeps an eye on the turltes as the site is vulnerable which makes it an easy spot for poachers to hunt. According to Edex Live, since 2000, Biswal along with the Forest Department continously monitors and patrols the beach where the turtles come to lay eggs.

Olive Ridley Turtles (Image: Edex Live)

During this exercise, the eggs hatched on the beach are relocated to nearby hatcheries, and when they hatch, the animal conservation team helps release them into the sea.

For his passion, the 37-year-old wildlife enthusiast has also been honoured with Biju Patnaik Award for Wildlife Conservation.

Speaking to The Logical Indian on his love for the turtles, Biswal said,

“Just like a mother protects her newborn , it is important to look after the hatchlings in these nesting sites. The hatching process takes place between July and December after which I closely look after the small baby turtles before they finally venture into the sea. It feels great to be a parent to these infant turtles.”

He added,

“We have also conducted beach clean-ups with the help of local groups to ensure the coastal areas are devoid of pollution. We need to realise that we should not disturb the natural habitat of animals for our comfort or greed. If we keep littering the beaches, carelessly dump trash into water bodies, then their entire ecosystem gets disturbed. In fact, how would we feel if someone did that to us.”

Bichitrananda Biswal (image: Edex Live)

Inspired by his work, two youngsters, Soumya Ranjan Biswal and Dilip Kumar Biswal travelled 800 km across the state to create awareness about the endangered species. This feat was also registered in the Limca Book of World Records.

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