More than 18 thousand birds have died in Sambhar lake of Rajasthan in November. Most of the migratory birds that die in the largest salt water lake in India come here during the winter season.
Where is Sambhar Lake
Sambhar lake is spread in Jaipur and Nagaur district of Rajasthan. The vast lake is spread over an area of about 5,700 square kilometers. Its depth is up to three meters. In Sambhar lake 83 species of birds live or come in winter. A large number of them come from other countries. These include birds of plover, egrets, herons and geese.
On November 10, tourists visiting the lake saw a large number of dead birds. Most of those who die are waterfowl. These include Northern Shoveler, Brahma Duck, Pied Avocet, Kentish Plover and Tufted Duck. Birds of more than 25 species have been killed.
18 Thousand Birds Died In 10 Days
In the first few days, these birds were found dead in the area falling in the Jaipur district of Sambhar lake. After 15 November, birds were seen dead in the entire lake. According to the government, 18,422 birds have died between 10 and 20 November.
Cause Of Death
The cause of the bird's death has not been known for sure. Experts speculate that the cause is a disease called avian botulism. According to the report of Rajasthan Veterinary and Science University, the legs and feathers of dead birds have got diseases like paralysis, neck failure, depression, anorexia.
The Rajasthan government is investigating the cause of death from eight different agencies and sources. Two of these eight agencies have given their reports. One attributed the death to Avian Botulism and the other agency to bird flu.
In the past too, there have been a large number of bird deaths due to botulism. In Canada, between 1995 and 1997, one million died in Alberta, 1,17,000 in Manitoba, 10 million in Saskatchewan, while in America, about half a million birds died in Green Salt Lake in 1997. In 1952, about 4 million birds were killed in western America by the epidemic.
Taking cognizance of this matter, the Rajasthan High Court has sought an answer from the government. The state government explained the possible reasons. These include viral infection, excess water salinity at one place, bacterial infection, more water in the lake due to good monsoon and due to which birds do not get food properly.
What Do The Experts Say
Experts say that the salinity of water has increased in many places in the lake. At the same time, the birds who traveled on long journeys did not get nourishment under fatigue and this caused them illness which caused death. Apart from this, any kind of bacteria in water can also be the cause of death. The real reason will be revealed only after investigation.