IBCN to compile Kerala bird atlas

: The Indian Bird Conservation Network (IBCN) will soon compile a bird atlas of Kerala, which will be the ‘first bird atlas of an Indian State.’

A decision in this regard was taken at a workshop of the IBCN held at the College of Forestry (CoF), Kerala Agricultural University, recently.

A bird atlas gives precise distribution pattern of birds in a region, and when put together over a period of time, it provides accurate trends of bird presence. Kerala has to its credit six bird monitoring schemes, which include recording common birds, heronries, waterbirds, pelagic (sea) birds, and forest birds.

The workshop discussed several bird conservation related issues. It was attended by experts from the Royal Society for Protection of Birds (RSPB) - U.K., Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS-India), and 55 Kerala birdwatchers.

Impressive schemes

“The impressive range of bird monitoring schemes being undertaken by Kerala birders makes it one of the leading States for birdwatching in India. It was exciting to see the enthusiasm and dedication of Kerala birders at the IBCN workshop,” said Bruce Liggitt of the RSPB.

The workshop proposed that the ecosystem services approach should be used to evaluate Kerala’s wetlands and the State should also consider setting up a ‘conservation toll’ for highways that pass through wildlife areas.

“Kerala currently has 24 Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs). Eleven more have been identified. These biodiversity jewels in Kerala’s crown are of high value not just for birds, but for fish and butterflies as well and should be protected. We have spotted Southern Birdwing, considered the largest butterfly in India, endemic to South India, several times in the Vazhachal forests. This priceless site is threatened by power-generation projects. Also, the wetlands of the State distinguish Kerala from many other States. These amazing places deserve protection,” said Neha Sinha of BNHS-India.

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Printable version | Oct 29, 2020 2:41:34 PM |

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