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Patrolling Intensified To Check Bird Poaching In Chilika Lake Ahead Of Chhadakhai Festival

Demand for non-vegetarian items like mutton, chicken, egg, and fish is high during Chhadakhai. Since there is a possibility of poaching of birds in the Chilika, the wildlife wing of the state government intensified the drive to stop killing the winged guests in the lake and its surrounding areas, an official said.

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Wildlife personnel Tuesday intensified patrolling in and around Chilika lake to curb birds from being poached on the eve of Chhadakhai, celebrated a day after Kartik Purnima.

The measures were being taken because birds are hunted by local people on this occasion as they eat non-vegetarian food after refraining from consuming such items during the month of Kartik in the Hindu calendar. Chilika lake, the largest brackish water lagoon in the country, spread over the districts of Ganjam, Puri, and Khurda, witnesses a large congregation of winged guests from several countries during the onset of winter. 

“To curb the poaching of the avian guests on the occasion of Chhadakhai, patrolling was intensified round the clock from Sunday with two extra mobile parties. Special emphasis was given in vulnerable areas like Nalabana, the bird sanctuary, and Tangi range” said PK Panda, assistant conservator of forest (ACF), Chilika wildlife division.

Demand for non-vegetarian items like mutton, chicken, egg, and fish is high during Chhadakhai. Since there is a possibility of poaching of birds in the Chilika, the wildlife wing of the state government intensified the drive to stop killing the winged guests in the lake and its surrounding areas, an official said.

The ACF said patrolling would also be carried out in the nearby areas of the lake. An estimated 40,000 migratory birds of different species have already congregated in the lagoon so far, sources said. Checking of vehicles, including fishing boats and motorcycles, in and outside the lake has been intensified in the range area, said Choodamani Murmu, range officer, Tangi.

(With PTI inputs)

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