Ganges River Dolphin

by Keely Sellman

Habitat

The habitat of the Ganges River Dolphin (Platonista gangetica) is the Ganges River in India. The average temperature in the water is fifteen degrees Celsius. Since there is a high human population in the area there is not a lot of natural vegetation left. This causes erosion and siltation of the river. Some of the native plants are date palms, fig trees, marigolds, and algae.

Animals

There are many animals in the habitat of the Ganges River Dolphin. A few are carp, Ganges soft shelled turtle, cat fish, and ducks.

Ganges River Dolphin

The Ganges River Dolphin is an endangered species that lives in the Ganges River. It eats catfish, carp, frogs, ducks, shrimp, and more. Since there are many dams in the Ganges River there is less area for the Ganges River Dolphin to get food. It also makes the dolphin have a harder time reproducing. Dams are part of the reason why the Ganges River Dolphin is endangered. Another reason is polluted water. One cause of polluted water is erosion. Erosion happens because there is not a lot of plants in the area so the dirt falls in to the water easily. The Ganges River Dolphin is a carnivore so it only eats meat.

Food Web

Energy Pyramid

New Habitat

The new Ganges River Dolphin habitat will be a freshwater river with a water temperature of 15° C. The water source will be a man made lake and rainwater. This new habitat will effect the environment because a river and the lake that provides water will have to be made. Carp, catfish and the Ganges soft-shelled turtle will live in the river providing food for the dolphins. The populations of these smaller species will be monitored and restocked as needed. I will plant marigolds, date palms, and fig trees along the riverbanks to prevent erosion to keep the water clean and clear. I will put a soft muddy bottom in the river so the dolphin can swim on its side to find food. The dolphin will have better use of it sonar in the new habitat because the water will be clear because the plants on the shore will prevent erosion of dirt into the river. Sonar and side swimming are both behavioral adaptations. I will keep the river clean and free of trash. It will have lots of open space so the dolphin can use its flippers and not be injured by floating trash. The Ganges River Dolphin is a mammal and needs to breathe air through its blowhole. The many species of plants along the shore will keep the habitat’s air fresh and clean for breathing. Flippers and blow holes are both physical adaptations. The adaptions of the Ganges River Dolphin will be neutral to the environment.