Migratory birds at the Delhi Zoo are found to be neglected and are not being fed properly amid the bird flu scare. Authorities seem uninterested in the species from Siberia, China and parts of South Asia to stay back.
These birds are specifically local-migratory and are fed with dead fish. Now the condition is that they are not provided minimum food for their survival following the directions of the Animal Husbandary department and the Ministry of Environmental and forest,” said Zoo curator Riyaz Khan.
Now they are flying to different places including Okhla and Sultanpur in search of food, he further said.
As per media sources, the National Zoological Park more commonly known as the Delhi Zoo, has been closed for over two weeks following the death of 13 water birds, some of them found positive to Avian influenza virus.
An advance batch of 15-20 migratory birds including Pintail ducks, Shovellers and Common Teal have arrived at the zoo. These birds mostly migrate from Siberia, South Asia and China.
On the other hand, local-migratory birds, the yellow-leg green pigeon, the night herons and dabchicks have started arriving in decent numbers at the zoo.
“These local-migratory birds fly from Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh,” Khan said. Moreover, that the existing free-range birds, including rosy pelicans and painted stocks, have also produced more than 100 babies in last few days.
“The number of newborns to these local migratory birds might increase to 400-500 in the following weeks and with zoo being instructed not to feed them it will be a difficult situation for us,” he added.
The arrival of migratory birds always attract more crowds. Last year, the footfall was around 30,000 while this time the zoo is closed to visitors.
“Every year we receive 500-1000 migratory birds. However, earlier, they used to come in large number but the environmental degradation and climatic changes have reduced their numbers,” Khan said.
Khan said “The zoo will open only after getting directions from our higher ups. We can’t say anything as of now.”