Artificial nests to bring chirp back in gardens

Used oil cans,plastic bowls and trays painted brown or green to form artificial nests will lure birds that are rapidly vanishing back to the city’s gardens.

Written by Express News Service | Published:June 17, 2012 1:01 am

Used oil cans,plastic bowls and trays painted brown or green to form artificial nests will lure birds that are rapidly vanishing back to the city’s gardens. The first-of-its-kind initiative by a group on Sunday,in an “extension of the environmental week”,will see volunteers putting up these artificial nests at Katraj Nana Nani park. Pune divisional commissioner Prabhakar Deshmukh,and senior officials of the PMC are expected to attend the event.

“Trees in the city are being felled driving away birds. We as a group want to encourage people to make artificial nests from used materials. This is hugely successful as we have already experimented the same in some gardens,’’ says one of the members of the Encore group,Gauri Dhole Patil.

The group comprising Patil,Priti Chadha and Noopur Pawar has taken the help of Pune Municipal Corporation’s garden department to have these artificial nests installed in all major PMC gardens.

Explaining the concept,they say they had experimented with the nests in a bungalow in Camp area. It turned out to be successful,which gave the group the confidence to start it in gardens of the city. A workshop to build artificial nests will be held.

“The artificial nest workshop is aimed at encouraging citizens to help get birds back to the city. We will be looking at key gardens in the city,’’ said Patil.

In monsoon,it’s hard for birds to find shelter,and the group wants to put up at least 50 nests in parks and increase them gradually by including other gardens. With such initiatives being carried out in many other cities – an initiative in Ahmedabad saw the Vasundhra Foundation distribute eco-friendly earthen nests and bird feeders- the members of the group say these artificial nests can help birds return to the gardens. “The initiative is to save birds. They need protection and their existence balances the environment,’’ says Narendra Salunkhe,a wellwisher of the group and a PMC official who helped the group to coordinate with PMC officials.

The concrete jungle of the city makes it more difficult for birds to survive and such initiatives will help maintain nature’s balance.

Sunday’s event will have tree plantation as well. Vishwajeet Naik’s workshop on Saturday will help volunteers make artificial nests. Pawar,Chadha and Patil said the message is to grow more trees and promote more artificial bird nests to save nature. Naik has experimented with such nests in his own garden with 70-80 per cent occupancy,says Chadha. Nana Nani Park is just the beginning. The want to spread it to all the gardens and colleges in the city.

They are talking to college principals so that students can put up the nests on campuses. “With most old colleges having green cover the students can do their bit and give something back to nature,’’ said Chadha of the initiative.

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