The members of SSMPSS will guide you about the do's and don't's during your visit. There are some critical issues which need to be addressed by all stakeholders including the visitors during all times:
Sustaining alternative sources of livelihood for the erstwhile poachers and their families
Retaining the core objective of involving the past poachers and hunters in income generating programs
Mangalajodi happens to extremely sensitive to outside disturbances, and it is primarily because of the fact that it was all along cocooned from the external forces that it continues to be a thriving breeding habitat which needs to be protected at all costs.
Some factors which are/could be detrimental to this patch of the wetland, like increased human movements leading to disturbances to nest building and nesting/rearing.
Members of the bird protection committee will intervene to prevent overuse of these places by visitors. Instructions have also been given for protection of this site from outsiders, who unknowingly cause irreparable damage.
Tourists will not be allowed to disturb the nests and eggs, by boats or on foot, disturb the nesting birds.
Increased cattle movement- the dried lakebeds, are browsed upon by buffaloes and goats, which stamp upon bird nests. In normal circumstances, this should be a reason to be serious about.
Introduction of activities which disturbs the delicate ecological balance like excessive tourism which will disturb the ecological balance of the wetland habitat and also lead to overuse of resources
Introducing activities in excess of the carrying capacity of these wetlands
Oil spill from motor boats- a number of boats ply in these waters all the year round by the villagers for fishing as well as transport. Care should be taken that when eco-tourism takes place in a bigger manner, then use of eco-friendly modes of transport should be resorted to
The area is prone to ill-directed developmental activities which would cause demise of this habitat, like well digging, artificial fish feeding, artificial prawn farming, etc. It is imperative that only activities should be encouraged, which don't cause any harm to this fragile wetland.
Few committee members share their concern over changing environment of Chilika due to siltation caused by deforestation in upstream forest areas thereby carrying loads of tones of silt in the lake and resulting in early aging of it. The creation of new Chilika mouths and dredging in lake is also resulting in changing local microclimatic conditions resulting in to change in species composition and changing productivity. Many of the villagers have observed differences in pre dredging and post dredging period that evidences fall in fish catch thereby affecting livelihood of thousands of fishermen.
During discharge of their duties the committee members have to face various problems. In the initial period when they banned poaching, they faced confrontation from poachers of surrounding villages, in some cases they face resistance from their own people. After long negotiation they are successful in reducing these conflicts.