Monday, February 6, 2023

The bird ‘swarms’ that charm the steel city


Jamshedpur: With the onset of winter, the arrival of migratory birds has given a reason to cheer for the bird watchers of the city. Though the flight of migratory birds to the city from Russia, Baluchistan, Myanmar and the foothills of Himalaya have delayed this season however with the spotting of some of the rare birds, the bird lovers are happy.

According to the bird watchers, snowfall and cold wave hitting the European and few Asian countries rare species of birds are compelled to migrate to the warmer zones for survival. A number of aquatic birds — Common Teal and Shoveller from Myanmar and Cotton Teal and Brahminy Duch (commonly known as Lalsar) from the foothills of Himalaya have been spotted at Dimna and Jubilee Lake this weekend.

Prof. K.K. Sharma, in charge of Jharkhand and Bihar,Eastern chapter of Ornithology Society of India, birds are staying away from the city due to increased human activities along water bodies in Jubilee Park and Dimna Lake.

“I recently watched non-aquatic birds, including Wage Tail from Russia at Jadugora located at the outskirts of the city,” he informed. He added that his students, who carry research, too are keeping an eye on the movement of birds.

It may be mentioned that a number of aquatic birds — Common Teal and Shoveller from Myanmar and Cotton Teal and Brahminy Duch (commonly known as Lalsar) from the foothills of Himalaya — to Jubilee Park have diminished over the years. With the increase in human activities and pollution, their arrival have minimised.

Ranjan Prasad, a city-based avid bird watcher said that extreme cold conditions force these birds out of their habitation during the winter season.

“Migratory birds generally come from South-East Asia and the Siberian region which, at this time of the calendar year reels under severe cold conditions. To protect themselves, these birds migrate thousands of miles to find a safer place in the relatively warmer geography.They stay here for about three to four months and then return to their original homeland,” he added

Among the popular varieties that are sighted at the Dalma hills and Jubilee Lake include Ruddy Shelducks, Great Crested Grebes, Coots, Tufted Pochards and Bar-Headed Geese.
Meanwhile, Bird Watchers Club at XLRI that also keeps a track on the birds informed that they have spotted some of the migratory birds near their campuses.

“During the season we spot numbers of birds at our campus area. This year too we have tracked some of the rare birds that migrate from colder regions,” said avid bird watcher.

He went on to inform that lack of food is also one of the prime seasons for diminish. They rely on food that is not now available at Jubilee Lake. It is a clear indication that the Dalma hills have become their safe zone now.

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