Status of Coastal Marine Biodiversity of Goa and Challenges for Sustainable Management - An Overview


  • SPES’s Goa Multi-Faculty College, Dharbandora, Goa, 403406, India


Degradation of marine and coastal ecosystem can be seen everywhere and Goa is no exception. Biodiversity provide important services to mankind and needs to be protected. Goa is endowed with varied microhabitats along its 105 long coast line. These habitats are home to diverse forms of life about which little is known. The coastal waters serve as nursery to fishes and other animals which are exploited commercially. The present communication reviews the current status on the taxonomic knowledge of the coastal biodiversity of Goa. The coastal water of Goa abound in flora and fauna. The information on major fauna and flora of Goa is sufficiently available. There is, however, some lacunae in our knowledge on invertebrate subgroups, such as sponges, octocorals, ctenophores, and tunicates and minor phyla. The biodiversity of specialized ecosystems continued to be inadequately known and remains a challenge to specialists from Goa coast. Threat to coastal and marine biodiversity due to climate change and environmental degradation are intensifying with time. The anthropogenic activities are causing damage to pristine coastal ecosystems. The loss of biodiversity will be felt in greater strength by future generation. The present knowledge on coastal biodiversity warrants continued taxonomic research in the least-studied or unknown groups of hot spot areas in the light of existing threats to marine biodiversity. It is suggested that further research on new species occurrences in the least studied groups should be continued to update the data and improve our knowledge. The appropriate measures will be required to protect the rich biodiversity resources of Goa.


Biodiversity, Conservation, Disturbance, Ecosystem, Goa

Subject Collection


Subject Discipline

Marine Biodiversity

Full Text:


Bhatt JR, Vivekanandan E. 2013. Coastal and marine biodiversity conservation in India: Regional symposium on ecosystem approaches to marine fisheries and biodiversity. 2013. p. 1-18.

WHO, editor. Connecting global priorities: biodiversity and human health. World Health Organization and Secretariat of the Convention on Biological diversity; 2015

Venkataraman KC, Raghunathan. Coastal and marine biodiversity of India. Marine faunal diversity in India., Academic Press. 2015; 303-48.

Menon NG, Pillai CSG. Marine biodiversity conservation and management. Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute Cochin, 1996. p. 57.

de Fontaubert CA, Downes DR, Agardy TS. Biodiversity in the seas: Implementing the convention on biological diversity in marine coastal habitat. IUCN Environmental policy and law paper No. 32. A marine conservation and development report. 1996. p. 82.

Reghukumar S, Anil AC. Marine biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. Cu Sci. 2003; 84:884-92.

Qasim SZ, Kureish TW. Biological diversity in the seas around India: Present status and major threats. Proc Indian Acad Sci (Animal Sci/plant sci) Suppl. 1986; 1-17

Norse EA. Global marine biological diversity a strategy for building conservation into decision making. Island Press, Washington, DC, 1993. p. 383.

Qasim SZ. Glimpses of the Indian Ocean. Universities Press (India) Ltd, Hyderabad, 1998. p. 206.

Untawale AG. Status and strategies for marine biodiversity of Goa. Proc Workshop on Integrated coastal and Marine area Management Plan for Goa; 1999. p. 139-150.

Devassy VP. Phytoplankton diversity in the Goa coast. In: Biodiversity of Goa, WWF Proceeding, Goa; 1992;

Gauns M, Mochemadkar S, Pratihar A, Shirodkar G, Narvekar PV, Naqvi SWA et al. Phytoplankton associated with seasonal oxygen depletion in waters of the western continental shelf of India. J Mar System. 2020; 204:103308.

Padmavati G, Goswami SC. Zooplankton ecology in the Mandovi-Zuari estuarine system of Goa, West coast of India. Indian J. Mar. Sci. 1996.

Achuthankutty CT, Ramaiah N, Padmavati G. Zooplankton variability and copepod assemblage in the coastal and estuarine waters of Goa along the central west coast of India. J Pelagic Biogeography. 1998; 2:19-26.

Parulekar AH, Dhargalkar VK, Singbal SYS. Benthic studies in Goa estuaries. Part III. Annual cycle of macro fauna distribution, production and trophic relation. Indian J Mar Sci. 1980; 9:1898-200.

Ansari ZA . Ecology of meiobenthos in two estuaries of Goa [Phd thesis]. University of Bombay; 1988. p. 224.

Sivadas S, Ingole B, Nanajka M. Benthic polychaetes as good indicators of anthropogenic impacts. Indian J Mar Sci. 2010; 39:201-11.

David A. Biodiversity and distribution of marine gastropods during pre and post monsoon season along Goa coast. J Mar Biol Ass India. 2013; 55:17-24. jmbai.2013.55.1.01720-03

Mahabaleshwar H, Padate V, Velip D, Revonkar CU. An updated inventory of new records of coastal macrofauna along Goa, west coast of India. Indian J Geo Mar Sci. 2013; 42:898-902.

Sreekanth GB, Chakarborty SK, JaiswarAK, Zacharia PU. An inventory on the coastal finfish and shell fish species of Zuari estuary, South West Coast of India. Indian J Geo Mar Sci. 2018; 47:945-58.

Achuthankutty CT, Parulekar AH. Biology of commercially important penaeid prawns of Goa coast. Indian J Mar Sci. 1986; 15:171-3.

Dev Roy K. Diversity and distribution of marine Brachyuran crab communities inhabiting west coast of India. In: Ecology and conservation of tropical marine faunal communities. 2013. p.147-169.

Modassir M, Ansari A. Distribution and ecology of molluscs in the estuarine mangroves of Goa. Proc Nat Acad Sci India, Sec B Biol Sci. 2010; 80:323-31.

Jagtap TG. Ecological studies on the mangrove environment along Goa coast [Phd. thesis]. Kolhapur, Maharashtra: Shivaji University; 1985. p. 212.

Chakraborty SK. Interaction of environmental variable determining the biodiversity of coastal mangrove ecosystem of west Bengal India. The Ecoscan: Special issue. 2013; III:251-265.

Sahoo G, Ansari ZA, Jamila BS, Sandesh U, Varik, Mangesh G. Epibiotic communities (microalgae and meiofauna) on the pneumatophores Avicinnia officinalis. Estuar coast shelsci; 2017. p. 1-11.

Chinnaraj A. Studies on fungi associated with mangrove ecosystem of the Indian subcontinent. [Phd thesis]. Goa University; 1993. p. 147.

Untawale, AG, Dhargalkar VK, Agadi VV. List of marine algae from India. Nat Inst Oceanog, Goa; 1983. p. 1-42.

Pereira N, Almeida MR. A preliminary checklist of marine algae from the coast of Goa. Indian J Geo marine Sci. 2014; 43:655-665.

Sinragayan L, Rethnaraj C. Occurrence of azooxanthellate scleractinian corals off Goa, mid west coast of India. Mar Biodivers Rec. 2016; 9:78.

Parvez Al-Usmani SM. Impact of mining activities on estuarine hydrobiological regime and benthic life in Goa, India. Oceanogr Fisher. 2018; 8:1-10.

Reise K. Coast of change: Habitat loss and transformation in the Wadden Sea. Helgoland Marine Research. 2005; 59:9-21.

Vatavaran, CMS. Panel discussion on challenges to Biodiversity of Goa. International Centre, Goa, Biodiversity Film Festival and foram; 2012 Oct 5.

Airoldi L, Beck MW. Loss status and trend for coastal marine habitats of Europe. Oceanography and Marine Biology: An Annual Review. 2007; 45:345-405.

Regunathan C, Reghuraman R, Chowdhury S. Coastal and marin biodiversity of india. Challenges for conservation. Coastal management- global challenges and innovation. Academic Press; 2019. p. 201-250.

Gray JS. Marine biodiversity: Patterns, threat and conservation needs. Biodiversity and conservation. 1997; 6:153-75.

Thrush SF, Dayton PK. Disturbance to marine benthic habitats by trawling and dredging- implication for marine biodiversity. Annual Review of Ecology and systamatics. 2002; 33:440-73.

Ansari ZA, Achuthankutty CT, Dalal SG. Overexploitation of fishery resources with particular reference to Goa. Sonak S, editor. Multiple dimension of global environmental change. New Delhi: TERI Press; 2006. p. 285-299.

Ansari ZA, Matondkar SGP. Anthropogenic activities including pollution and contamination of coastal marine environment. Jecophysio. Occup Hea. 2014; 14:71-78.

Saravanan KR, Sivakumar K, Choudhury BC. Important coastal and marine biodiversity areas of India. Sivakumar K, editor. Coastal and marine projected areas in India: Challenges and way forward, ENVIS bulletin; Wildlife and Protected areas 2013; 15:134-88. PMid:24302802 PMCid:PMC3831729


  • There are currently no refbacks.