Bihar gears for fresh bird census with ‘eBird’ app

Bihar is developing an “eBird” application for the annual waterfowl count-2023 that will catalog migratory birds coming into the state and list species of conservation concern.

The bird count as part of the Asian Waterbird Census (AWC-2023) will follow similar procedures this year.

“The list of wetlands selected in the last counts will be revised, in order to eliminate those wetlands with insufficient bird presence and add new ones in 2023. The list of coordinators, birders and bird guides must be enriched and improved,” they said. Minutes of the preparatory meeting on bird census conducted by Chief Wildlife Warden Prabhat Kumar Gupta.

The virtual meeting on December 24th was attended by Dutchman Taej Mundkur, who has worked for three decades with Wetlands International, a global non-profit conservation initiative. He is also the coordinator of the AWC.

In addition to developing an ‘eBird App’, one of the main objectives of the exercise is to count migratory birds.

Bihar hosts an array of migratory birds including mallard, ruddy duck, grebe, garganey, Eurasian coot, northern pintail, white duck, citrine, ferruginous duck, Eurasian grebe, barred goose, greylag goose, red grebe, bar- It was headed by Goose , Common Sandpiper , Long-legged Grebe , Temminck’s Stint , Little Stint , Pallas’s Gull , Spotted Redshank , Taiga Flycatcher and Dunlin , Gupta told PTI.

He said that after completing all formalities and preliminary surveys of wetlands in all districts, the waterfowl counting exercise will begin in the first week of February 2023.

“We have already started working on the development of the ‘eBird application’ to quickly carry out the exercise. Training on this will be given to our officials and the recording will be done in a hybrid way, which includes the digitization of all records related to waterfowl,” said the chief. Wildlife Warden said.

Explaining the Annual Waterfowl Count 2022, Gupta said, “15 teams comprising a total of 413 human resources covered a total of 68 wetlands in 23 districts of Bihar and invested around 986 man-hours in the count during AWC-2022. 202 species of 61 families 45,173 individuals of 45,173 birds were reported, of which 39,937 individuals of 80 species were waterfowl, 2,271 individuals of 21 were water dependent birds and 2,965 individuals of 101 species were land birds”.

He said the exercise, for the first time, provided baseline data that could be used in conservation management strategies for birds in Bihar.

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