Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Ahmedabad's favorite bloodsport

Bird life of Ahmedabad city is impressive. My checklist of rehabilitated birds is of 126 species; all from in and around Ahmedabad. People visiting from other places often get amazed by the diversity of birds that are now part of the ‘urban environment’. But by bad luck, this city also becomes a death trap for thousands of birds every year. Yes, I am talking about the Mass Bird-Killing Sport, also known as Uttarayan – The Kite Flying Festival (14 & 15 January). This is the worst time of the year for resident birds, the critically endangered White-Rumped Vultures topping the list. About 25% of the total Vulture population of city either die or is grounded for life, every year. 

This Vulture ran out of blood before reaching the hospital. The impact of crashing into tar road tore its crop.
This is one of our most 'important' birds. What a shame.

Also, this is the time when many of the species including Vultures have young ones in nests. This means if the parents die, the babies will too. More bad news. This is the winter migration time and Ahmedabad falls in the migration route. We have done immense awareness and education though various medium regarding the same. Almost everybody in Ahmedabad knows what exactly happens during ‘Uttarayan’ yet a very small percentage have shown concern and stopped participating in the sport. For the rest, the entertainment value is far greater than anything else. In this case, Uttarayan is nothing less than a free bird-hunting season; a cold-blooded sport with no restrictions. For those who have no clue what I am talking about, please go through the presentation below. I had made this a few years back with the aim of sensitizing Amdavadis, but I seem to have failed.

I don’t think we need anything more than plain common sense to make the decision.


Unknown said...

This IS's it permitted and perpetrated? Thanks for putting this up...makes us more aware. Continue the good work Soham.


Unknown said...

Im planning to start an awareness community on facebook, targeted at the locals..can i use this video? Or if there is any other?