Patna: Mystery over ‘tagged’ bird unravelled

PATNA/KISHANGANJ: The mystery surrounding the recovery of the transmitter-tagged bird from a Kishanganj village in Bihar two days back has been finally laid to rest, after Bombay Natural History Society claimed of using the bird for one of its study project.

The bird, a bar-headed goose, was ringed and fitted with a satellite tracking device on December 13 and released in the Chilka Lake in Orissa by a Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) scientist Balachandran. BNHS was assigned a Food and Agriculture Organisation project of ringing ducks and geese as part of its motive to study things related to spread of avian influenza.

Balachandran is the national co-ordinator of the project. The project was launched, as most of the ducks and geese that migrate to India, originally came from China and Tibet. Around three years back a large number of such birds had died in China due to avian influenza, commonly known as bird flu.

“The moment I learnt about the recovery of the bird in Bihar, I contacted BNHS director Asad Rahmani informing him about the incident. He immediately forwarded me these details,” BNHS member and Indian Bird Conservation Network state co-ordinator Arvind Mihsra told TOI on Saturday.

According to the data received from the transmitter of the bird, after its ringing in Chilka Lake it went to Mangolia and bred there. After that the bird migrated to China’s Quinghai Lake and from there it came to this area around a week back, Mishra said.

Details of the data are with BNHS. The data also gave a valuable input that bar-headed goose also breeds in Mangolia, Mishra said. Earlier, it was recorded that these birds bred mostly in China and Tibet.

Meanwhile, forest department has made special arrangement to keep the bird in a good shape, as after the recovery it appeared to be in some sort of stress. “After consulting few experts, we gave the bird liquid glucose and now it appears to be quite well,” Araria divisional forest officer Nand Kumar Manjhi told TOI on phone.

He said, a field official has been sent to Sukahi police station, where the recovered transmitter has been kept, so that it can be handed over to the BNHS. The bird was intercepted from the mid-stream of river Mechhi on Bihar-Nepal border under Sukhani police station on Thursday.

From TOI

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