Sudden death

  • 14/06/2004

Alarmed by reports of abandoned flamingo chicks dying due to the severe heat, Gujarat's forest department rushed a team to the Rann of Kutch to conduct an inquiry. Almost 10,000 fledglings are faced with imminent death from starvation. Their parents have already fled the island due to lack of food. The right mix of sweet and brackish water in the Rann fosters zooplankton, algae and small fish that constitute the diet of these birds. A sudden increase in the salinity of the Rann waters has led to their death thus triggering this tragedy. So far, around 1000 flamingo chicks have died.

However, chief conservator of forests Pradeep Khanna ascribed the deaths to distress resulting from abandonment, and not shortage of food or excessive heat. Khanna claimed that a team of forest officials had inquired into the incident and the situation was under control.

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