Sambalpur, Feb 28 (UNI) The number of migratory birds has sharply decreased in the Hirakud dam reservoirs spread over 935 sq km of water area, forest official said.
Divisional Forest Officer Prem Kumar Jha said according to a survey conducted by the Wild Life department on January 30 last as many as 22,443 birds belonging to 25 species visited the reservoir this year.
Last year, 36,740 birds visited the reservoir while during 2005 and 2006, 56,834 and 49,172 birds thronged the dam respectively.
The DFO attributed the decline of birds to excess water in the dam. He said this year less birds visited the site as they got less land area inside the reservoir.
Meanwhile, sambalpur University Life Science Professor Artabandhu Mishra said any comment on the number was immature as no study was made by any ornithologist in Hirakud reservoir like that of Chilika to assess the number of migratory birds visiting the reservoir site.
Prof Mishra said availability of food and safe living condition are the factors that determine visit of migratory birds at a place.
The DFO said though, the number of birds had declined, but the number of species visiting the reservoir remained intact.
Most of the birds came from Siberian region and spent the entire winter season here, he added.
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