Tamil Nadu

Houses for sparrows



Q: What is the status of sparrows in the country?

 

A: The population of the Indian House Sparrow (Passer domesticus indicus) is generally on the decline in India. But they are not disappearing. You can see those more frequently in areas, including villages where houses and other buildings have safe nesting sites.

Q: What are the reasons for the decline?

A: As for the house sparrow, food and safe feeding sites are not scarce, but safe nesting sites are, especially in areas where the modern design of the houses does not permit nesting sites. Wild birds and animals do not reproduce if they are not sure of safe living conditions. .

A: Do sparrows need insects to survive?

 

A: Although adult house sparrows are predominantly grain-eaters, they turn non-vegetarian during their breeding season, feeding mostly on insects in larval stages. Sparrow nestlings are voracious feeders and I have noted parent birds making more than 140 visits to a single nest in one day.

Q: Sparrows seem to be selective when it comes to accepting boxes.

 

A: Even if the birds are found in an area, nest boxes should be located in strategic places. The nest should not be kept on a tree or in a fully open area of the house, such as an outer wall, where birds face the threat of crows, treepie and other predatory birds. The nest box should not be too close to human presence either. They do not like intrusion into their family quarters.

 

Q: There is an impression that microwave towers are one of the reasons for dwindling sparrow population.

A: I have seen sparrows in the vicinity of strong microwave towers at the Tower Junction of Nagercoil. These birds were found on trees next to some old buildings that have tiled roofs.









Nesting facility key

In New Delhi, Robert Grubh’s approach has helped Nature Forever Society to effectively increase sparrow population around the metropolis.

Educating the public on the ecological needs of the house sparrow, he has shown that nesting facility is important for its survival.

Mohammed Dilawar, founder, NFS, said, “The theme for this year is ‘I Love Sparrows’. The theme has been inspired by the strong link people share with it.” 

In Chennai, volunteers of Nature Trust say they sight large number of sparrows in north Chennai during their regular bird counts in the city.

- R. Srikanth



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Printable version | Jan 19, 2021 3:07:32 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/houses-for-sparrows/article7014753.ece

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