As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Monday, 7 March 2016

Environmentalists worried as Art of Living event forces birds’ flight

Ritam Halder, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Updated: Mar 06, 2016 01:29 IST

Preparations for the three-day Art of Living event on the banks of Yamuna have reportedly forced birds to migrate from the area.

As the site has been cleared of all bushes and vegetation, species such as larks, pipits, warblers and other rare birds found in this zone are rapidly disappearing because of the destruction of the riverine habitat.

The World Culture Festival (WCF) being organised by the Art of Living Foundation on March 11-13, expected to see a gathering of 35 lakh people, has spread out over an area on 1,000-odd acres on the ecologically fragile Yamuna floodplain.

Bharati Chaturvedi, director of the Chintan Environmental Research and Action Group and an avid birder, said many birds such as river lapwing, red avadavat, warblers, yellow-bellied prinia, oriental skylark and striated babbler, among others, have been forced to migrate.

“Grasslands are one of the most vulnerable ecosystems. The entire event site has been levelled and the small water bodies that existed earlier have been filled up and the natural vegetation like reeds along the sandy banks has vanished. This is breeding season but this disruption may result in no breeding at all for many species,” Chaturvedi said.

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