‘We observed a few chicks dying when they got stuck in the mesh arranged on the stands. We are taking all measures for creating a conducive atmosphere for these birds’
A few pelican chicks died and eggs were damaged when they fell from the iron stands arranged in Kolleru Lake at Atapaka Bird Sanctuary due to overcrowding of the winged visitors.
Some thousands of pelicans, painted storks and other birds were seen in the shrubs and on the stands in the lake. About 1,500 chicks, aged between 30 and 60 days, were found on the stands. “The water level in the lake is good. This year the number of birds visiting the sanctuary was high when compared to previous years. A few chicks died and eggs were damaged when they fell from the overcrowded stands,” said Forest Department officials.
Speaking to ‘The Hindu’, Kaikalur Forest Range Officer (FRO) V. Ratna Kumar said the Kolleru Wildlife Management officials arranged iron stands for facilitating nesting. Unlike pelicans, painted storks mostly arrange their nests in shrubs.
“In this winter alone, about 4,000 migrant birds visited the lake for brooding. Many of them leave the sanctuary with their young ones after the chicks start flying (at three months age). We are taking steps to prevent the mortality of the birds,” he said.
Atapaka Bird Sanctuary Deputy FRO V. Satyanandam said as there was no protection on the edges of the stands, a few chicks and eggs slipped from the stands.
“We also observed a few chicks dying when they got stuck in the mesh arranged on the stands. We are taking all measures for creating a conducive atmosphere for these birds,” he said.
In addition to the 60 iron stands, they erected 40 more stands at different places in the lake for birds to rest. “Metal rods have been arranged on the borders of the new stands to protect the chicks and the eggs,” he observed.