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.

Thursday 31 May 2018

Rescue effort to save godwit eggs

The unseasonably wet April has caused problems for nesting birds on the Cambridgeshire and Norfolk washlands, including the area's breeding Black-tailed Godwits, the RSPB and Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) have revealed.

The soggy conditions have left the Nene and Ouse Washes unusually full of water for the time of year, forcing large numbers of birds to nest away from the safety of the reserves. Conservationists have discovered clutches of Black-tailed Godwit eggs on nearby farmland. The eggs have become stuck in mud, sparking fears for the overall success of the 2018 breeding season and consequently the species' future.

However, farmers and conservationists teamed up to save a total of 32 eggs, which were collected from arable land and are now in incubators at Welney WWT, Norfolk, as part of pioneering conservation scheme Project Godwit.

Hannah Ward, RSPB Project Manager at Project Godwit, said: "The Nene and Ouse Washes in the Fens are two of just a handful of sites in the UK where Black-tailed Godwits breed.

"Historically, they nest on the washes, but the high water has forced them onto wheat fields, where eggs have been fused to the mud and the tall crops conceal potential predators. Due to the conditions these eggs have been subjected to, we are anticipating a reduction in the numbers of eggs that hatch."

Conservationists have been using a technique known as headstarting – raising young birds from eggs collected in the wild – to help boost the British godwit population. The species' numbers at the Ouse Washes are critically low, but it's hoped that headstarting, combined with the creation of extra wetland habitat, could ultimately restore the population to the counts seen in the 1970s. The Ouse and Nene Washes in the Fens are artificial wetlands, created in the 18th century, to drain the surrounding land for farming.

Parakeets oust bats from nest holes


Previously thought to be relatively ecologically harmless, invasive Ring-necked Parakeets have been seen attacking bats in a Spanish park and ejecting them from tree-hole roosts.

At the turn of the century, the largest colony of Greater Noctule bats in Europe occupied a park in Seville, Spain. However, between 2003 and 2017, the number of trees used by bats in the park fell by 81 per cent, according to a study at the Doñana Biological Station in the city. Conversely, the number of nests of Ring-necked Parakeets, an introduced species native to the Indian subcontinent and East Africa, increased by a factor of 20 over the same period.

The research team documented parakeets nesting in tree cavities previously occupied by bats. The researchers also observed the 120-g parakeets chasing the 50-g bats out of their nests. Parakeets largely attacked the bats at the entrances to tree holes in the few hours before dusk, obliging the bats to flee during daylight hours (though some bats were able to fend them off). The researchers also found 20 dead and two injured noctules under nest sites, and some were fresh enough to show beak cuts on their muscle and bones. 

In parallel, parakeet numbers increased during the study period, being very scarce until 2013, but showing a 96 per cent increase in the four years thereafter. Greater Noctule bat showed a decline of 70 per cent in the same period (and an 81 per cent fall since 2003), almost a mirror reflection of the parakeet increase. By 2017, the number of tree holes occupied by noctules had eroded down to 14 from 47 in 2013, while those occupied by parakeets had increased from 159 to 311 in the same period.

While you sleep, scientists will use a space telescope to spy on migrating birds

Scientists are on the brink of learning the details of where they go and why.

By Dyani Sabin Yesterday at 1:00pm

At the end of April, or when spring starts to thaw, a great migration north begins. Thousands upon thousands of songbirds make the trek, but you won’t see most of them. They fly in the dark to avoid as many predators as possible, and in doing so evade the humans trying to study them as well.

So, even as 4,000 of the world’s 10,000 bird species fly over our heads every night, scientists are still scrambling to answer basic questions. When do birds decide to migrate? How dangerous is it? And how do anthropogenic factors like light pollution and climate change impact birds as they travel?

For much of the history of migration studies, ornithologists would have to go out to field stations, catching and tagging birds as they stopped. Research data on a single population took several years of trying to recapture tagged birds. As citizen science bloomed, ornithologists enlisted volunteers to help count their study subjects, then radar allowed researchers to track birds in the air, but even still, the studies were arduous.

“We are learning about things now on much larger scales. Even ten years ago, if you wanted to study something you had to go out and gather the data yourself,” says Morgan Tingley, an ornithologist at the University of Connecticut. “I think in twenty years, ornithologists probably will have a good sense at any point in time where the majority of species are living and what they’re doing.”

Nest fire under car bonnet sparks warning from RSPB Shetland

May 19, 2018, 6:48 am

Wildlife experts have reminded people to check their vehicles for birds after a man from Brae had a lucky escape when a nest under his car bonnet went on fire.

RSPB Shetland manager Helen Moncrieff said a variety of methods can be used to discourage birds from nesting in their vehicle, such as using netting or keeping cars in garages.

Sean Fillingham said he noticed a burning smell when driving his Audi Quattro on Tuesday night, but he didn’t think it was coming from his car.

Only minutes after arriving back home he found black smoke and flames under the bonnet.

He grabbed a nearby hose to cool things down, but some damage was caused to parts of the car.
“I smelled burning wood a few times [when I was driving] and thought it was just someone burning stuff,” Fillingham said.

“I stopped at my house and went in. I was in for a few minutes and the cat wanted out. That’s when I noticed the black smoke from under the bonnet.

“I rushed out and popped the catch. I thought it might be dangerous but I lifted the bonnet. The car was on fire but luckily a hose was right there so I managed to get it out.

“There was wiring and plastic damage but also fuel hoses, so I was very lucky. It’s a 1985 Audi Quattro coupe – my classic car and irreplaceable. It was parked near another car and a wood garage, so very lucky.”

His escapade with the burning bonnet incidentally came just days after he found a starling nest with eggs in his workmate’s van.

Fillingham added that he was unsure if there had been any eggs or birds in the nest which had caught fire.

Moncrieff said birds can also choose to nest in wheel arches as well as engines at this time of the year.

“The best thing to do is try to discourage birds from nesting in your vehicle,” she said.

“I’ve heard of people moving their car around regularly or keeping it in a garage, using netting and also filling in spaces in the engine with tin cans when stationary.

“If a bird does nest in your vehicle, Scottish Natural Heritage can issue a licence to remove the nest for health and safety reasons.”

Red kite put down after being shot and blinded

21 May 2018

A rare red kite had to be put down after it was found shot and blinded in County Durham, the RSPB said.

The bird was found alive in Derwent Gorge, near Shotley Bridge, by a member of the public. However, after it was found to be blind it was euthanized.

Since 2010, six kites have been poisoned or shot near Derwent Gorge, including a red kite found poisoned in nearby Muggleswick in 2014.

Police are investigating and have appealed for witnesses.

Like all birds of prey, red kites are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 which makes it an offence to deliberately kill or injure a wild bird.

Those convicted can face an unlimited fine or up to six months in jail.

Howard Jones, RSPB Investigations Officer, said: "It is very sad that this bird had to be euthanized, but there was no alternative.

"Close examination of the bird by experts revealed that its injuries were so severe that it could never have been released back into the wild and it would have had zero quality of life."

Jenny Shelton, from the charity's Investigations Unit, added: "Spring is a crucial time of year when adult kites will be feeding their young, so the death of this bird could have also affected any family it might have been raising.

"Red kites were almost completely wiped out of the UK until they were reintroduced in the 1980s.

"This has been a wonderful success, and most of us enjoy watching these impressive birds. But threats like persecution are preventing them from naturally expanding their range and we clearly have a problem area on our hands here.

Wednesday 30 May 2018

Listening out for Fermanagh's 'elusive' curlews

By Louise CullenBBC News NI
21 May 2018

The curlew has inspired poets with its low, bubbling and rising call.

It is sometimes confused with the much bolder gull and whimbrel, but is a much more elusive bird than those brazen show-offs.

That can make monitoring their numbers, which are known to be in decline, that much more difficult.

"Curlew are really struggling within Ireland at present, and their populations have declined by over 89%," said Amy Burns, a Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) warden in County Fermanagh.

"It's one of these birds of the farmland, and of the wider countryside and it's very enigmatic.

"It's got this lovely, haunting, bubbling call which a lot of Irish poets and writers have written about, so it would just be a real shame to see them go from our countryside."

There are two sites in Northern Ireland where the RSPB keeps the bird under observation during its short Spring breeding season.

One is in County Fermanagh, the other is in County Antrim.

"Fermanagh's quite important, so we hold about 60 pairs of curlew and that's about 10% of the all-Ireland population," said Amy.

"At Glenwherry up in Antrim, they have about 47 or 48 pairs of curlew.

Invasive Mice Endanger the Atlantic Yellow-nosed Albatross on Gough Island

Endangered Atlantic Yellow-nosed Albatross have been pushed to the brink of extinction by invasive mice on Gough Island in the South Atlantic Ocean. But, that will soon change. The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds is taking action to protect the albatross by removing invasive mice.

This article contains descriptions and a video of mice predating on live birds and may be upsetting.

By: Kate Lawrence

On the evening of 20 February 2018, I watched an Atlantic Yellow-nosed Albatross chick die before my eyes, as it was eaten alive by mice. I arrived at nest 14 at 9.30pm. Mice were feeding on the chick’s already open back-wound by 10 pm. And less than one hour later, the chick from nest 14 was dead.

In this line of work, you see plenty of dead animals. On Gough Island, we regularly see the remains of dead birds: albatross that crash land during extreme wind events; adults standing over dead chicks soon after hatching (cause of death unknown); and scattered carcasses of burrowing petrels and prions left after skua predation. Eggs and chicks and adult birds die of natural causes all the time. Death and predation are part of the natural ecosystem. But on Gough Island, mice are not.

Rare masked booby sighted off Southern California coast, hundreds of miles from natural home

PUBLISHED: May 15, 2018 at 5:41 am | UPDATED: May 15, 2018 at 5:43 am

DANA POINT — As Mark Tyson watched a flock of seagulls chase a larger white bird, he knew the latter was something he had never seen before. And, he thought, if he was right, the large seabird was hundreds, if not thousands, of miles outside of its typical range.

On Sunday, May 13, Tyson, a naturalist on Capt. Dave’s Dolphin and Whale Watching Safari, was out on a whale-watch trip four miles off Strand Beach when he spotted a group of common dolphins feeding on fish. Seagulls were hovering above hoping to share in some of the spoils when Tyson, of San Juan Capistrano, caught a glimpse of the unusual seabird.

“I realized I’d never seen that type of bird before,” he said. “It was a masked booby, which is extremely rare here. Every time the seagulls would dive down for a fish, you’d see the booby on the water and he would immediately be chased with the fish he caught.”

A masked booby, with a body typically three inches larger than that of a California seagull, is most commonly found in tropical oceans. It’s territory is below the 30th parallel near Baja and in the Southern Hemisphere.


Put a price on endangered species

May 11, 2018

One of the world's rarest birds of prey, the Spanish Imperial Eagle, was thought to be in recovery in the early 1980s but numbers have declined and now the species is qualified as Vulnerable (VU) necessitating comprehensive management plans.

Like many other birds of prey, the eagle has come to increasing conflict with people and is now seriously important for conservationists.

Can conservationists put a price on species such as Spanish Imperial Eagle or not? How it can help to conserve it?

Iranian conservationists have talked less about measures which must be taken to protect endangered species, this is while detailed guidelines would help conservation plans to be accomplish effectively.

In this article we do talk about Spanish Imperial Eagle as a case study, to change the way people think about it.

Why put a price?
At the beginning of the 20th century the Spanish Imperial Eagle (Aquila adalberti) was still relatively common and widespread. It could be found in many places in Spain in areas of dry, uncultivated habitats.

Today, the species has disappeared from much of its range as a result of the loss and fragmentation of its forest habitat. Since the future existence of eagles and other endangered species is of value to those interested in biological conservation, the question arises: "Can we place a dollar value on the future existence of a species? But the future value depends on how long a period we are talking about!

UAE releases 1,000 Houbara Bustard in RYK in pursuit of conservation

May 12, 2018

In the presence of UAE Embassy in Islamabad and representatives of Fund for Houbara Conservation (IFHC) Abu Dhabi and officials of Forest, Wildlife and Fisheries Department of the Punjab province and Pakistani media, the UAE released 1,000 Houbara birds in Rahim Yar Khan as part of its constant pursuit and efforts of preservation, and an achievement of the United Arab Emirates.

On this occasion H.E. Hamad Obaid Al Zaabi, the UAE Ambassador to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, said that the UAE has achieved a distinguished position on global level in its efforts to conserve the Houbara and its leading role been recognized in this field. Family breeding projects have been launched in Abu Dhabi for more than 40 years, and have achieved outstanding results despite the difficulty in houbara’s captivity of producing for its distinguished habitate from other birds that can be multiplied in captivity. On this occasion, the Ambassador said that the UAE is the first country in the world to track Houbara birds through satellites during their migrating from north to south, founder of the United Arab Emirates, at that time the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, sensed the dangers for Houbara, and he began to warn that if we do not initiate the successful ways to protect this rare species, the Houbara will eventually become extinct and will disappear from our heritage and the future of our children.

Al Zaabi revealed that the story of the success of Abu Dhabi’s efforts in breeding Houbara, specifically in 1977, and of the Al-Ain Zoo, with no more than seven Asian Houbaras, was the first nucleus of captive breeding in the United Arab Emirates. After prolong efforts to lay the foundations for captivity breeding programs with a firm and strong determination for several years, the first Asian chick was successfully produced in captivity in 1982.

H.E. recalled that H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan described this remarkable moment as saying: ‘If I forget, I will not forget that day when this good news conveyed to the late Sheikh Zayed and the feelings of human beings and the joy that filled his life as the promising results fruited that this rare bird will begin to multiply in the heart of the UAE’s vibrant environment. His Highness stressed that the UAE’s keenness to raise, study and preserve Houbara comes from a sense of responsibility, as Houbara defines the ancient heritage and deeply rooted history for more than two thousand years and a genuine tendency to preserve one of the pillars of our national heritage, which we inherited from our parents and grandparents, therefore, preserving it is a safeguard for species and for this ancient heritage and authentic traditions, and it is only adopted by those of thought and determination.

Monday 28 May 2018

Birds from different species recognize each other and cooperate

Researchers from the University of Chicago and University of Nebraska show for the first time how birds from two different species recognize individuals and cooperate for mutual benefit.

Cooperation among different species of birds is common. Some birds build their nests near those of larger, more aggressive species to deter predators, and flocks of mixed species forage for food and defend territories together in alliances that can last for years. In most cases, though, these partnerships are not between specific individuals of the other species--any bird from the other species will do.

But in a new study published in the journal Behavioral Ecology, scientists from the University of Chicago and University of Nebraska show how two different species of Australian fairy-wrens not only recognize individual birds from other species, but also form long-term partnerships that help them forage and defend their shared space as a group.

South-eastern red-tailed black cockatoo's shrill screech may help save it from extinction

By Ann Jones for Off Track
Posted Saturday at 21:04

Unusually, the female of this cockatoo species is more colourful than the male.

He is truly glossy; black as tar glistening in the heat, with a strong circle of red revealed on the tail, most visible when seen from below. But he pales in comparison to his mate.

She is a stunner, with black feathers scalloped in yellow, red and orange that swirl into a broach on her chest and give her sub-species their name — the painted lady.

They belong to one of five sub-species of red-tailed black cockies, spread out across Australia.

The south-eastern red-tailed black cockatoo lives in a small area, completely isolated from its closest evolutionary neighbours by huge swathes of impassable terrain.

These are birds that stand on the precipice of extinction.

But the high-pitched sounds made by fledgling chicks could be key to their preservation.

Rare and ever rarer
Like all black cockies, they're most often heard before seen, calling from the air as they fly, then appearing as a team of black crucifixes in the sky.

They look like a cross between a raven and an eagle: large, solid and dark as night.

They move in forward motion on longer wing strokes than seem physically possible. It's as if, by some miracle of avian biology, they are held aloft more by magic than by wing beats.


By Kenny Smith - 14th May 2018

Politicians and school pupils have been given a rare insight into the recovery of one of Scotland’s most loved and rarest birds – the black grouse.

Murdo Fraser MSP joined landowners, Scottish Natural Heritage and government officials and Ardvreck School pupils for a tour around Strathbraan in Perthshire, which houses important numbers of black grouse.

The black grouse is a red-listed species, with Scotland holding most of the UK population and, at this time of year, males fight to display at the best ‘lek’ sites in a bid to attract females.

Attendees at the first ever open day hosted by Tayside and Central Scotland Moorland Group, learned how careful land stewardship had seen populations rebound in the area.

They were also driven through the local glen to see populations of endangered wading birds, with Strathbraan defined as ‘nationally important’ for red-listed species such as the curlew: Britain’s most urgent conservation priority.

Gamekeepers described how habitat management and the legal control of abundant predators had helped to increase the survival of rarer species such as black game and waders.

On one of the visited estates, a 20-year programme of woodland planting, grazing reduction, rotational heather burning, predator and bracken control had seen black grouse rise from very low numbers to around 50 male black grouse.

Gamekeepers search for missing sea eagle

10 May 2018

Gamekeepers and land managers from an Aberdeenshire estate have appealed for help in locating a missing sea eagle.

The bird's satellite tag was last recorded in woodland near the River Dee on the Invercauld Estate near Braemar.

The estate said its ranger and gamekeepers were working hard to find the one-year-old eagle, named Blue T, whose tag last signalled on Saturday.

Pellets are understood to have been found in the the search area, which suggest it had been roosting there.

RSPB Scotland confirmed Blue T was raised from a chick at Abernethy before it fledged.

The tag was said to be last operating within a native woodland and Scots pine regeneration zone on Invercauld.

But neither the bird nor its tag have been located within the woodland or estate.

One other sea eagle - also known as a white-tailed eagle - and two golden eagles have been spotted but there have been no known sightings of the missing bird.

Shooting estates are often blamed for bird of prey disappearances, but the Invercauld estate insisted it was committed to conservation.

Estate manager Angus McNicol said: "We have spent the last two days trying to locate any trace of the missing sea eagle and we will be continuing our efforts to watch the area in case there has been a technical malfunction of the tag and the sea eagle returns to roost again.

"For several months our ranger has been working with the RSPB's sea eagle project officer to track the movements of the sea eagles in our area and if the tag is no longer transmitting then it is a concern to us.

"Invercauld hosts a vast range of bird species and other types of wildlife and we want to learn if any harm has come to the bird.

Sunday 27 May 2018

Buzz over sighting of 'extinct' woodpecker at Bukit Timah Nature Reserve

MAY 9, 2018, 5:00 AM SGT

Birdwatchers hail reappearance of species here after it was spotted in nature reserve
Environment Correspondent

The great slaty woodpecker is not the most attractive of birds, with its bald head and grey cloak of feathers.

But a rare sighting near the summit of Bukit Timah Nature Reserve last week has got the birding community in Singapore buzzing with excitement.

The reappearance of the woodpecker, thought to be extinct in Singapore due to forest clearance during the Republic's developing years, has been described by veteran birdwatcher Alan OwYong as the greatest ornithological event in Singapore in the last decade.

"Since 1950, the great slaty woodpecker, the largest woodpecker in the world, has disappeared from our forests along with seven other woodpecker species," Mr OwYong, committee member of the Nature Society's (Singapore) Bird Group, told The Straits Times.

"Its reappearance a few days ago was most unexpected, as it is the rarest among the eight species."

Positive signs for Rathlin Island corncrakes

8 May 2018

Few people in Northern Ireland will have ever heard the call of the once common corncrake, never mind seen one.

Modern farming methods are blamed as the prime factor for its retreat.

In a rare good news story for the migrant bird, a member of the rail family, it has been heard again on Rathlin Island, off the Antrim coast.

The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) is crossing its fingers that the shy species on its red endangered list has returned to breed.

One of Ireland's rarest birds, the secretive creature has a distinctive call.

Its unmistakable "crex-crex" was heard in Rathlin at the weekend, much earlier in the season than usual, prompting hopes that it has successfully bred on the island where it had been heard and occasionally sighted in recent years.

Friday 25 May 2018

Woman trying to save ‘dazed’ owl gets attacked by bird in car

May 9, 2018 | 1:16pm

This owl didn’t give a hoot that this lady was just trying to help.

A woman who spotted a disoriented great horned owl late Monday thought she was doing a good deed when she put the bird in her car and drove away for help – until it came to and attacked her behind the wheel and held her hostage.

“This owl, dazed when a motorist got it off Oracle Road last night, revived inside her car,” officials with the Arizona Game & Fish Department in Tucson said in a tweet. “It then latched onto her sleeve and steering wheel for some time.”

Mark Hart, a spokesman for the wildlife agency, told the Arizona Republic that the unidentified woman intended to “render aid” to the animal after it was apparently struck by a car. The woman’s mother contacted the agency after she became trapped inside her vehicle.

A department official then told the woman to pour water on the owl in an attempt to jar it loose, but instead the animal drank the water and kept its talons dug into the woman’s sleeve and her car’s steering wheel.

“She’s fortunate she wasn’t hurt,” Hart told the newspaper. “We have instances ranging from people trying to aide a coyote hit by a car and down on the street only to be bitten, to people separating young wildlife from their mothers in the mistaken notion that a mother has abandoned the small animal.”

The owl ultimately released its grip and hopped out of the car, Hart said. The animal appeared to be OK and was later spotted by the woman’s mother in the same area on Tuesday.

Endangered Bird With Ankle Identifier Found on Lehigh University Campus

The bird was found with an ankle identifier, which means someone's probably looking for it right now

Published at 5:41 PM EDT on May 11, 2018 | Updated at 5:52 PM EDT on May 11, 2018

This rare bird, believed to be a Sun Parakeet, was found on Lehigh University campus Thursday. Police are searching for its owner to hopefully return the bird home.

A rare, brightly-plumed bird was spotted on a college campus in Pennsylvania Thursday and police are now searching for its owner in hopes of returning the bird home.

Employees at Lehigh University in Bethlehem found a bird believed to be a Sun Parakeet, otherwise known as a Sun Conure, in a tree on campus.

The parakeet is an endangered species of parrot native to South America that can grow to be nearly two feet long.

Officers from the Lehigh University Police Department were able to place the bird in a cage. The bird, which police say is unharmed, was wearing an ankle identifier when found.

The bird has yellow, orange and green feathers, and its age is unknown.

The bird is currently being held at the Lehigh University Police Department while they try to track down the owner. Police have already received a couple of inquiries about the bird.

If you have information about the bird's owner, contact Lehigh University Police at 610-758-4200.


Africa's Most Endangered Parrot Fighting for Survival

There are fewer than 2,000 Cape parrots left in South Africa's southern mistbelt forests.



South Africa’s Hogsback State Forest is a magical preserve of dewy ferns and giant trees covered in a fuzzy lichen called old man’s beard. Rumor has it that the region’s mist-wreathed hills and plunging waterfalls inspired the literary imagination of J.R.R. Tolkien, the South African-born author of the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Hogsback is a haven for yellowwoods, South Africa’s national tree. Logging companies favor the tall evergreen for furniture, and since the late 1800s they’ve razed 60 percent of the country’s yellowwood forests.

The widespread loss of these native trees has had dire consequences for South Africa’s only native parrot, the Cape parrot, which relies on yellowwoods for food and nesting cavities. An often-fatal virus called psittacine beak and feather disease has also taken a toll. The virus’s origins are debated, but research suggests wild parrots may have caught it from captive birds kept in aviaries. (Learn more about the impacts of deforestation.)

Bald eagle sightings are on the rise locally

May 13, 2018

CONNEAUT — Bald eagles, once on the road to extinction, have been seen in abundance in Ashtabula County in recent days, bird-spotters are reporting.

Large numbers of young birds have been seen along the Lake Erie shore, especially in the vicinity of Conneaut Harbor, observers said. Janet Szekely, who lives along the lake in Conneaut, has a front-row seat for the sightings.

Eagles often perch in trees on her property, said Szekely, who often takes a short trip east to the city’s harbor for a bit of bird-watching. Recently, she has seen large numbers of eagles on the harbor sandbar and breakwater.

“They’re everywhere in Conneaut Harbor,” she said. “I see them early in the morning.”

For three years, Szekely has maintained a Facebook page — Ashtabula County Eagles — that welcomes photos and comments from fans of the national symbol. Others who have posted to the page in recent days agree eagle sightings have been plentiful.

The resurgence of the bald eagle in Ohio is a wonderful success story, said Laurie Graber, a wildlife research technician with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The number of eagles seen locally mirrors population growth enjoyed in other parts of the state, she said.

Chhatbir zoo seeks state bird baaz in India, abroad

 The Chhatbir Zoo in Punjab is set to welcome a new inhabitant — the majestic northern goshawk, ‘baj’ or ‘baaz’ in Punjabi, the state bird, that has not been sighted in the region for a long time. 

Published: 13th May 2018 09:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th May 2018 09:13 AM  |  A+A A-

CHANDIGARH: The Chhatbir Zoo in Punjab is set to welcome a new inhabitant — the majestic northern goshawk, ‘baj’ or ‘baaz’ in Punjabi, the state bird, that has not been sighted in the region for a long time. 

The development follows the wildlife department’s hunt for the bird spotted in the portraits of Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru of Sikhs, across the Middle East and Eastern Europe countries. Speaking to The Sunday Standard, Chief Wildlife Warden, Punjab, Dr Kuldeep Kumar admits that the state does not currently have the bird in captivity anywhere.

“We have taken permission from the Ministry of Environment and Forest and Central Zoo Authority to rescue a baaz from the wild. The bird has earlier been sighted on the foot hills of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, but we haven’t heard of any recent sighting. We are also trying to locate baaz in other parts of the country, chances of which seem bleak,” he says. 

“If we do not find the bird here (India) then we will have to get it from Middle East or Eastern European countries. We plan to get three to four pairs of the bird as the founder population to then facilitate breeding here. The infrastructure at the zoo has already been renovated for the new member,’’ says Kumar.