In the year 2011, the Ministry of Environment and Forests approved a programme for the recovery of dugongs in the Andaman and Nicobar archipelago that was funded by the Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS). The programme, structured in two phases, was designed as a needs-based approach to dugong conservation in the archipelago and was led by the Department of Environment and Forests, Port Blair. Phase I was based largely on addressing the most urgent knowledge gaps as a necessary precursor to developing a comprehensive conservation strategy for the species across the archipelago. Based on the information gathered in this phase, Phase II would identify clear points of management intervention, establish a monitoring programme for the species and its habitat, and help further clarify aspects of the species biology, behaviour and ecology that would be critical for its rational conservation.