And then there were none...
Narrated in English, this 21 minute film documents the rampant killing of the ambassador of the wetland – the otter. The film, one of the winners at the Vatavaran Film Festival 2003, deals with the significance of the smaller, but important, species such as the otter, that are being systematically wiped out.
Fayaz with the help of otter expert, Dr. Syed Ainul Hussain, goes into the otter’s natural history, telling the audience about the characteristic features and geographical distribution. The film then goes on to deal with the illegal trade in pelts and otter trade smuggling routes, which overlap with the trade routes for other illegal animal products. Otter pelts, for which Delhi is a hub, account for over one-fifth of the illegal wildlife skins seized in northern India.
Destruction of their habitat and pollution additional reasons for their depleting numbers, despite their listing on the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 and categorisation as vulnerable in the IUCN Red List. There is much ground work required if we are to save this species. And then there were none… is a film that every nature enthusiast must watch. One can’t help ponder on the direction humanity is moving in, if as harmless an animal as the otter is pushed to extinction by our vanity.