The mercury has dipped by more than five degree below the average normal across Jharkhand in the last couple of days with capital Ranchi shivering at 12-14 degree Celsius on Wednesday night.
Bokaro recorded the lowest of 12.1 degree Celsius, five notches below the average normal, while Ranchi shivered at 12.6 degree Celsius, two degree below the average. The city’s temperature fell by five degree in one week.
Met officials said the change in the wind pattern was a major reason for the dip in mercury. “A cyclonic circulation recently culminated at the Bay of Bengal with a northwesterly wind prevailing across the state for the last two days, which brought down the night temperature,” said BK Mandal, director Ranchi Meteorological Centre.
The daytime temperature across the state too has dropped by 1-2 degree Celsius with Ranchi recording a maximum temperature of 27 degree Celsius in the last 24 hours.
The night temperature could remain below the normal for the next two to three days. Thereafter, it may return to normal, forecasting officer at the Ranchi Met office RS Sharma said.
The minimum temperature on Friday and Saturday may hover between 13 and 14 degree Celsius, he said.
The sudden drop in temperature has spelled trouble for the homeless, street dwellers and rickshaw pullers, especially in Ranchi.
Dinesh Mahto, a daily wage worker who sleeps on Main Road in Ranchi, said, “We are shivering at nights without blankets. Ranchi Municipal Corporation has not yet distributed blankets among the poor in the city.”
Early winter, however, is proving to be a boon for migratory birds. The winged visitors can be seen flocking different water bodies of the state.
Bird watchers and ornithologists said that normal rainfall and rising aquatic life in the water bodies across the state will see an increase in the number of migratory birds by 10-15% this year.
“Migratory birds come early to Jharkhand this year. Monsoon rain has been good so has aquatic life. Since fish farming is increasing in the state, this will encourage the influx of migratory birds,” said KK Sharma, in charge of Jharkhand and Bihar chapter of the Ornithology Society of India.
Thousands of migratory birds, including pochard, common pochard, godwal, wagtail, greater grab, greylag goose, ruddy shelduck, bar-headed goose, coot and yellow wagtail make their home in water bodies across the state between November and early March in search of food and protection from the bitter cold in the Himalayan region.
According to the Asian Waterbird Census 2015, the bird population in Jharkhand is 71,134, including 37, 158 migratory birds. Altogether 78 bird species have been identified, including 29 species of migratory birds.