January 7, 2021 11:26:25 am
Four more birds, including one waterfowl, were found dead in Sukhna Lake and surrounding areas on Wednesday. The four birds comprised cormorant, little egret, crow and pigeon.
An Eurasian Coot, also known as Common Coot, a winter visitor, was found dead in the lake on Tuesday. Two carcasses out of five were sent for examination to the Regional Diseases Diagnosis Laboratory (RDDL), Jalandhar. A source said, “The death of Common Coot is a matter of concern. Common Coot falls in the category of migratory birds. But it is found in and around Sukhna Lake in adequate numbers.”
Rima Dhillon, an avid birder settled in Chandigarh, said, “Common Coot is a migratory bird. Some species of the Cormorant have also migrated to Chandigarh from faraway places. Little egret, crow and pigeon are residential birds.”
UT forest department officials maintained that unnatural behaviour was not observed among the migratory birds, which are present at Sukhna Lake and Dhanas Lake in normal numbers. The dead crow and pigeon were recovered on Wednesday morning. Pigeon was found in Sector 4. The Cormorant and Little Egret were found dead in Sukhna Lake near Regulatory End in the afternoon.
Chief Wildlife Warden (CWW), Debendra Dalai, Deputy Conservator of Forest (DCF) Abdul Qayum along with other forest field staff visited Sukhna Lake.
They conducted a detailed survey of the important locations in terms of migratory birds. The carcasses of cormorant and little egret were fetched out from the lake through boats. The carcasses were floating in the water far away from the shore.
CWW Dalai said, “So far, no unnatural behaviour was found among migratory birds. The five birds, which were found dead in the last two days, were residential birds. We are taking all precautions in the wake of bird flu among migratory birds in Himachal Pradesh and two other states.”
Dr Kanwarjit Singh, joint director of Animal Husbandry and Fisheries Department, said, “We are on alert. We do collect samples of birds’ dropping, water every month. We have been following this practice since the previous reported outbreak of bird flu in 2014. Till now, we have not received any positive report about any kind of flu from RDDL, Jalandhar.”
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