Thursday 23 December 2021

Bird watching and Sanctuary visit


Today Wildlife Institute of India organized a bird watching and identification of visiting birds to Hirakud dam.  It's aim was to create interest in biodiversity assessment research among post graduate students. I participated in the programme along with my friends. Four interns from Wildlife Institute were first introduced us about bird watching. They are expert in their respective fields (flora,fauna,insects,reptiles). They shared their experiences of working in wildlife projects. They explained how some species work as environmental indicators, how birds migrate from one place to another(feeding and breeding), how some species migrate away from places with high human activities, how can we evaluate environmental condition of a particular area and mitigate the condition for proper functioning of the ecosystem. We discussed how dams and barrages are important for us. 

Then we went to Debrigarh wildlife sanctuary. This is the first time I visited a wildlife sanctuary. First they took us to visitors' orientation centre. There we watched some videos about the sanctuary and at last a video on rules and regulations of the sanctuary. Then we went for a jungle walk. They divided us into three groups. In our group, we were 14 students, a guide assisted by two rangers. 

Our guide is working on butterflies. He explained about the butteeflies we saw and how butterflies work as an environmental indicator. Their colours help them to dodge their predators. He described how wild animals counting is done. We saw poop of many wild animals. 

Poop of hyena (pen or coin is used to know size)
We walked 4-5 km and reached nature camp where visitors reside. Here boating facilities are available. After spending some time we returned to the main gate by bus. Our group has not encountered with any wild animal. We spent about three hours in jungle. We have not entered deep into the forest as we have limited time. However we got to know about many things. I memorized a line shown in an orientation video,  "Leave your footprints and go with memories ".

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