Government announces emergency as 85% of the city drowns, causing millions in damage
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Over 1,000 birds have been found dead at the Sambhar Salt Lake in Rajasthan. The Sambhar Lake is India’s largest inland saltwater lake where various species of migratory birds flock every year. A number of reasons have been speculated as to the cause of the deaths.
The estimated death toll has so far been approx. 1,000. Locals and experts worry that it might be as high as 5,000. Over 10 species of birds were found strewn across a stretch of 12-15 km of the catchment area of the lake. Although the cause of death is still unknown, some of the speculated reasons include possible water contamination, bacterial or viral infection, early migration and inhospitable climate, increased salinity in the water or a hail storm.
Rescue efforts have been initiated and the viscera of the birds have been sent to pathology labs in Bhopal and Ludhiana to determine the cause of these deaths, so that they can be prevented in the future. Some of the species of the birds which died included plovers, common coot, black-winged stilt, Northern shovelers, ruddy shelduck and pied avocet.
This is the second incident that has taken place in Rajasthan. Earlier, 37 demoiselle cranes were found dead in the Khinchan area of Jodhpur due to pesticide-laden seeds used by farmers.
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