Bird watchers and enthusiasts from Delhi and NCR successfully spotted 268 species on the Big Bird Day that was observed on February 5. The figure not only marks an increase from the 228 species spotted last year, but is also the highest recorded in the last two years. The number of birds reported in 2015 was 239.
The Big Bird Day, which is an annual event aimed at getting a sense of the state of the ecosystem, was organised by the Delhi Bird group.
“The figure this year is encouraging, as it shows a 15% jump in the number of bird species as compared to last year. This also presents a positive picture as far as the ecosystem is concerned. This also shows that the green cover may not be depleting after all and more people are taking an interest in bird sighting these days. More eyes always matter,” Nikhil Devasar, member of the Delhi Bird group, said.
According to the findings on Big Bird Day, 378 species were spotted across the country, while 270 were reported from Hyderabad.
Rare birds like White-bellied Minivet, Black-throated Thrush, Grey-winged Black Bird and Mashall’s Iora were the top picks this year.
“We also spotted 167 species in Haryana this year. Rare birds were spotted in Mangar and Damdama area,” Pankaj Gupta, a bird enthusiast, said.
A total of 24 teams participated in the bird race (as the bird-spotting exercise is also called) for Delhi- NCR, while another 28 teams participated across the country.
“We will conduct another bird race in the region on February 25. The participants could even upload pictures of birds spotted in their respective areas on our website. They do not have to cover too many areas in this race,” Gupta said.
During the event this year, 160 species were reported in Najafgarh, 141 in Damdama lake and 129 species in Sultanpur.
Red-crested Pochard, Orphean Warbler, Bar-tailed Treecreeper, Thick-billed Flowerpecker, Himalayan Bulbul, Gray Bushchat and Jungle Owlet were among the species spotted in the Delhi NCR region.