In a major crackdown against the sale of endangered species near Charminar, Forest Department officials on Saturday rescued around 490 birds ranging from owls to kestrel. The rescued birds were shifted immediately to Nehru Zoological Park.
Taking the assistance of Hussaini Alam police, the forest officials simultaneously raided around 15 shops that had put these birds for sale at Mahbub Chowk. Alerted by the activity, some bird sellers closed their shops and managed to escape with their collection.
The action in coordination with the police and volunteers of animal welfare groups such as Friends of Snake, was swift with the teams focussing on rescue of the birds, said Sk. Baba Quader Vali, deputy range officer, anti-poaching squad. However, no arrests were made.
The rescued species included Parakeet, Munia, Kites, Indian Roller (pala pitta), Starlings, Shikra, Owls and Owlets apart from more than 200 small jungle birds.
All these are scheduled birds and most of them have been declared endangered.
“These have been listed as endangered and their sale is strictly prohibited,” he said.
Both the forest officials and police personnel carried out the rescue operation in a short time to preempt the possibility of crowds gathering and causing obstructions.
The shifting of birds was done in a hurry and the personnel were seen almost running to the shops, collecting cages and rushing back to the waiting vehicles.
On receiving the birds, the zoo authorities asked the veterinary staff to subject each bird to a thorough check-up and assess their health.
Those found fit would be released in the wild and a decision would be taken on when and where to release them.
Some bird sellers closed their shops and managed to escape with their collection