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Prelim Bits 23-04-2017

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April 23, 2017

First underwater metro tunnel

  • The tunnel is constructed inside the bed of Hoogly River in West Bengal, the first under river tunnel in India.
  • The two tunnels running parallel will connect the twin cities of Howrah and Kolkata located on either side of the Hooghly.
  • The twin tunnels, about 520 meters long, are crucial to the East West Metro project that will connect the eastern part of Kolkata to the Howrah Maidan across the river.

Kharai Camels

  • Kharai camels also called as “Swimming Camels” is a separate breed among the nine breeds of camel found in India.
  • Gujarat is the only State in India which is home to Kharai Camels.
  • The camel is adapted to extreme climate of Kutch and shallow seas and high salinity.
  • It grazes on mangrove trees and can swim up to three kilometers into the sea in search of their primary food mangroves.
  • The camels are bred by 2 distinct communities, the Fakirani Jats, who are the handlers and the Rabaris, who own the animals. The nomadic communities move in search of mangroves for their camels to feed on.
  • Jats, Rabaris and Sammas belong to maaldhari – the nomadic pastoralists of Kachchh who own herds of camels, goats, sheep, buffaloes and cows.
  • The steadily decreasing mangroves due to heavy industrialization along the coast have affected the traditional grazing routes.
  • Mangrove sites in Gujarat – Gulf of Kutch, Gulf of Khambat and Dumas-Ubhrat.

Lionfish

  • The lionfish is a carnivorous fish native to the warm, tropical waters of the South Pacific and Indian Oceans (i.e., the Indo-Pacific region), including the Red Sea.
  • It is an invasive species in Atlantic Ocean and it has no known predators in the Atlantic Ocean.
  • Lionfish have been found in water depths from 1 to 300 feet on hard bottom, mangrove, seagrass, coral, and artificial reefs (like shipwrecks).
  • Lionfish is a nocturnal hunters and it is a top predator in the food chain.

Native range of Lionfish

Liver carcinogen

Aflatoxin is a toxin produced by Aspergillus moulds that commonly infect corn, peanuts, almonds and sunflower seeds. It has the potential to cause liver cancer

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