Artificial nesting platform brings hope for Greater Adjutant conservation

GUWAHATI: In an innovative initiative by conservation group, Aaranyak here towards conservation of globally endangered Greater Adjutant Stork species, an artificial nesting platform has been provided for the bird at a conservation site near here.

Twenty-seven tear-old conservation and research group Aaranyak, a member organisation of the IUCN, which celebrated the breeding season of this endangered bird species through a happy hatching ceremony with villagers at its conservation site a few days ago, is happy over the success its first of its kind experiment of using artificial nesting platform for the bird species.

 It has been observed that lack of proper nesting tree is a major problem for this bird. Greater adjutant is a globally threatened bird and current global population is about 1200birds. Assam harbours about 700 to 800 birds of this species and considered as its global stronghold. 

In Assam, this colonial nesting bird make its nesting colonies in privately owned nesting trees in the middle of the villages.  Many nesting trees were either cut down by villagers in last several years from many historical breeding colonies in Assam or some of them destroyed due to natural causes.

Aaranyak experimentally tried to erect artificial nest platform made out of bamboos next to the traditional nesting location in Dadara-Pacharia area near Guwahati.  Interestingly, a pair of stork has started constructing a nest on it and in last few days the female has been seen to incubate eggs.

Aaranyak has claimed that this is for the first time in India that such effort has been made in situ by constructing an artificial nest platform for any endangered bird and the target species has started using it within two months of construction. “This experiment may be a permanent answer to save many threatened large bird species who are finding it difficult to locate a proper nesting tree in their traditional nesting locations. The conservationist community is now eagerly waiting to a successful nesting of this bird in this artificial nest platform with the new chicks,” Aaranyak said

Purnima Devi Barman, the Green Oscar winner of 2017 who leads greater Adjutant conservation projects of Aaranyak mentioned “Nesting tree is a limiting factor and seven nesting trees naturally fell down this year. So, we immediately tried this experiment.  We have tried this with very limited resource but now I am confident that we can expand this initiatives next year and many other conservationists can also try this in other endangered species”.



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