Volume 14 No 2 (2022): International Journal of Early Childhood Special Education



DOI: DOI: 10.9756/INT-JECSE/V14I2.203

Keywords: Barbeel, Bardowa beel, Bhairavkunda, Boga, Chalan, Chandubi, Charan, Dhanukhando, Dighali Pukhuri, Deepor, Durgasarovar, Kapla, Kaptai, Koya-kujia, Tamranga.


A beel is a term for a pond (wetland) with static water in the Ganges-Brahmaputra flood plains of the Eastern Indian states of West Bengal, and Assam and in the country of Bangladesh (once a part of Pragjyotisa-Kamrupa). The term owes its origins to the word of the same pronunciation meaning ‘pond' in the Bengali and Assamese languages. There are different causes for the formation of beels. A string of beels is indicative of their being the remains of a great river that deserted its channel, moving to a new one elsewhere. Typically, beels are formed by abandoned river meandering course, inundation of low lying lands during flooding, where some water gets trapped even after flood waters recede back from the flood plains. Beels may also be caused by filling up of low-lying areas during rains, especially during the monsoon season. In ancient Assam there are large water bodies called haors. A haor is a bowl or saucer shaped shallow depression, also known as a backswamp. Throughout the rainy season a haor is such a vast stretch of turbulent water that it is thought of as a sea, within which the villages appear as islands. It remains under water for seven months of the year. During the dry season water drains out leaving small shallow lakes exposing rich soil extensively cultivated for rice. In the central part todays Bangladesh, important beels are Katla, Chatal, Nagarkanda, and Chanda. In greater Comilla, Faridpur, Dhaka and Pabna districts the beel is sometimes referred to as baor. Ancient Assam comprising present Bangladesh has thousands of beels, with the most common names being Chalan Beel, Gopalganj-Khulna Beel, Meda Beel, Aila beel, Dekhar beel, Kuri beel, Erali beel and Arial Beel. Most of the large beels have shrunk a great deal in recent decades. Regionwise, in the northwest of Bangladesh some of the larger beels are Bara Beel in Pirganj, Tagrai Beel in Kurigram, Lunipukur in Rangpur, Bara Mirzapur Beel in Narail and Keshpathar in Bogra. The old river course of Atrai has beels. In the southern region of Bangladesh, important beels are Boyra, Dakatia, Bara, Kola, Patla, Chatal and Srirampur. In Assam, Derelict and semi-derelict wetlands constituting a part of the Brahmaputra floodplain, the beets are a vitally important fishery resource of Assam. There are about 1392 beets in present Assam, the maximum number being in Nagaon district (289), followed by Cachar (263), North Lakhimpur (153), and Jorhat (131). Together the beets constitute over 80% of Assam’s lentic waters. In beels that maintain connection with the river, locally migratory fishes are of considerable significance. The Indian major carps, particularly catla and rohu, depict such forms with Labeo gonius also contributing significantly. Gravid fishes of these species enter the beel every year during the monsoon months for spawning. The fishery of Dhir beel is dominated by Gudusia chapra and other miscellaneous species including minor carps followed by major carps, cat fishes, live fishes, and common carp. Dominant zooplankton in Dhir beel include Protozoans followed by Copepods, Rotifers and Cladocerans. Due to high decomposition of organic matter at the bottom, beels, in general, are rich in benthos.




Volume 14 No 2 (2022): International Journal of Early Childhood Special Education


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