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Iced Kashmir pushes guest birds to leave


HAROON RESHI | Srinagar, January 2, 2012 21:34
Tags : kashmir | freezing water | migratory birds |

At a time when most of the Kashmir’s lakes and other water bodies are freezing because of the drastic fall in temperature, the Valley’s Hokersar wetland in the outskirts of Srinagar city, has been loosing its guest-birds during last a couple of weeks.

These migratory birds, actually belonging to the places like Russian Siberia, China, Eastern Europe and the Philippines use to come Kashmir’s Hokersar and other wetlands to escape the extremely low temperature in their traditional habitats.

According to experts, the effortless availability of foodstuff and the suitable climate are the main reasons for the vast migration of these birds to the Valley.

“We had received about six lakh migratory birds in Hokersar till the mid December this year but since the water of this wetland has frozen due to sub-zero temperature, the visitor birds have started leaving the place. They are moving to other wetlands of the subcontinent particularly UP and Amritsar in India and Punjab in Pakistan", Mr. Rouf Zargar, the wild life warden said. “The birds will come again after the temperature will start rising in the Valley", he added.

The visiting birds include Tufted ducks, Brahminy ducks, Gadwall, Graylag Goose, Garganey, Mallard, Common Merganser, Northern Pintail, Common Pochard, Ferruginous Pochard, Red-Crested Pilchard, Ruddy Shelduck, Northern Shoveler, Common Teal, and Eurasian Wigeon.

The wildlife department of Kashmir make special arrangements for providing food and peaceful atmosphere to the winged visitor, who start coming in the month of September every year.

There are many wetlands in Kashmir valley like Narkara, Hygam, Shalbug, Anchar, Wallar, Dal, Manasbal which play as hosts to the migratory birds but being a biggest wetland in Jammu and Kashmir, Hokersar always attracts the large chunk of visiting birds.

The local people and the tourists from different parts of India and abroad throng Hokersar wetland (spread over 10 kilometers) to have the glimpse of these winged visitors.

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Issue Dated: Feb 5, 2017