Saras, vulture census completed in UP

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Lucknow, June 22 (IANA) Uttar Pradesh has completed the census of Sarus cranes and vultures and the state will finally have scientific data available for the two species of birds.

Both, Sarus and vultures, are facing threats to their survival in the state.

According to official sources in the state biodiversity board, that has conducted the vulture census, the data is being compiled by researchers from the Institute of Wildlife Sciences (IWS) at Lucknow University.

While the two-phase census for vultures was wrapped up on June 16, the last round of the three-phase Sarus census was conducted state-wide on Sunday by the forest department and Lucknow University.

The board and the forest department will get the first-ever atlas prepared on the two species based on the census. The atlas would show the sites where the birds’ mate, breed, nest and feed.

In case of vultures, it would also map the roosting sites (where the birds rest or sleep on giant, tall trees).

The conservation plan of the two birds would be made according to the findings.

Sarus is the state bird of UP but habitat destruction is the biggest threat the crane faces.

On the other hand, vultures are critically endangered and protected under the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act.

In UP, there are eight out of nine vulture species found in the country.

However, habitat destruction and poaching have threatened their existence.

Since vultures are lesser known, the data would help find out more on them.

The pre-breeding census of vultures was done in January and post-breeding census was completed last week. The data would be compared.

Vultures mostly lay a single egg in a year and survival rate for the hatchlings is poor.

Similarly, the two previous rounds of sarus census were conducted in September and January. The last round was completed on Sunday.

–IANS

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