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Open billed storks repose trust in Kota sanctuary, rebuild one-third nests

Three years after flashfloods in the Chambal river destroyed their nests and made them homeless, open billed storks have rebuilt almost one-third of their nests at Jamuniya island of the Chambal Ghariyal Sanctuary

jaipur Updated: Jul 29, 2018 22:17 IST
Aabshar H Quazi
Aabshar H Quazi
Hindustan Times, Kota
Rajasthan News
Open billed storks nesting in the Jamunia island of Chambal Ghariyal Sanctuary.(AH Zaidi/HT)

Three years after flashfloods in the Chambal river destroyed their nests and made them homeless, open billed storks have rebuilt almost one-third of their nests at Jamuniya island of the Chambal Ghariyal Sanctuary.

Located around 35 km from the city, Jamuniya island at Balapura village in Kota district has emerged as an inviolate habitat for birds, particularly for the open billed storks, in the recent years. In the flashfloods of 2015, around 5,000 chicks and birds of different species, particularly that of open billed storks, were destroyed. But now the Island is once again abuzz with the chirping of bird species including open billed storks.

It took the birds three years to reach the present state. After the 2015 shocker, the open billed storks made around 100 nests in 2016. The numbers almost remained the same in 2017. But this year, the number of their nests has reached to 200, the highest in last three years.

“Open billed stork was in shock after the 2015 mayhem, so they remained cautious in laying eggs and forming nests in last two years. Now when their confidence has increased gradually, they have increased their nests this year,” said Abdul Haneef Zaidi, the deputy secretary of Hadauti Naturalists Society.

However, the storks have laid eggs with a delay of two months this year. “Open billed storks usually lay eggs in April month, but this year the bird species have laid eggs in June end,” he said, adding that the storks are resident bird species and lay three to five eggs in each nest.

There are also around 200 nests of other bird species including egrets, harons and cormorants at the island. “If protection and promotion of one-km-long Jamuniya island is done, it can emerge as a significant bird watching site in Rajasthan,” Zaidi said.

Bharatpur’s Keoladeo National Park is the biggest breeding site of open bill storks in Rajasthan. Jamuniya island situated inside the Chambal Ghariyal Sanctuary had become the second largest breeding colony of the open billed storks in 2015 with over 600 nests.

First Published: Jul 29, 2018 22:17 IST