Monday, November 28, 2005

News - Call for creating awareness on bird flu

Bangalore, Nov. 27 (UNI): The recently concluded national seminar on bird ecology and conservation has recommended to the government to embark on a national awareness campaign about the imminent threat to humans, poultry and wild birds from the H5N1 strain of 'Bird Flu Virus.

It suggested sanitisation of various poultries to keep poultry birds segregated from the wild birds and to constantly monitor the migratory bird population for any tell tale symptoms of the disease. The experts, who had attended the two day deliberations on November 12 and 13 also suggested to initiate DNA bar coding for all species of birds in India as a reliable tool for species identification as well as a dependable forensic evidence material in wildlife jurisprudence. Awareness campaigns around the villages should be intensified and ritual hunting should be stopped forthwith, they exhorted.

The experts also called for launching of the National Bustard Project to save the great Indian Bustard which was on the verge of extinction along with other birds such as black breasted Parrot Bill, Nilgiri Pipit, Gyps Vultures and Flamingoes.

They also underscored the need to conserve and protect the grasslands along the western ghats and the adjoining buffer areas. Mangroves and coral reefs which could redouble as bio-shields and protect properties and natural resources should also be restored along with lakes. Tanks located in the city should be declared as 'avian hot spots' and protected areas, they added.

The Hindu News Update Service

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