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Home / India News / 2007 / May 2007 / May 18, 2007
Over 100 peacocks feared dead in Madhya Pradesh
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Over 100 peacocks feared dead in Madhya Pradesh

Over 100 peacocks are feared to have died in the last three days in Morena, Madhya Pradesh, causing alarm in the bird lovers communities in the State.

By Ram Chand Sahu

Morena (Madhya Pradesh), May 18 : Over 100 peacocks are feared to have died in the last three days in Morena, Madhya Pradesh, causing alarm in the bird lovers communities in the State.

Forest officials blame the sweltering temperature and water scarcity for the deaths.

Remedial action is being taken in the form of 50 water pots being placed at various locations in the peacock territory. Plans are also being made to dig trenches for water for the birds.

According to some forest officials, several measures are being taken to bring the situation under control.

"The major reason for the deaths of peacocks apparently seems to be extreme heat and a lack of water. Directions have been issued to visit the affected areas along with 50 pots of water to control the peacocks' water problems. Besides, we are also digging big holes to store water in them from our tankers," said Jagdish Chandra, Divisional Forest Officer, Morena.

Locals, however, accuse the Morena administration of shilly-shallying despite being told about the deaths of peacocks in the area.

"Every year, 100 to 200 peacocks die and this time they are dying due to water scarcity here. Almost 25 to 50 peacocks die every day," claimed Komal Singh, a local.

Primarily poached for its feathers that are sold openly in India and abroad, peacock population is plummeting across India. Peacock feathers are sold openly in Udhagamandalam and other tourist destinations. Incidents of locals poisoning waterholes to kill peacocks and deer for their meat in protected areas such as Melghat in Maharashtra have also been reported. More and more peacocks are being killed in villages that once venerated the birds.

Morena, a place that derives its name from Mor (peacock) and has a sizeable peacock population, had hogged headlines when 40 peacocks were found dead here.

The post-mortem reports in most of these cases revealed the consumption of insecticide-washed seeds from nearby fields.

Peacock, the national bird, is protected under Section 51, 1-A of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 and killing it is strictly prohibited.

The export of peacock tail feathers, articles and handicrafts made there from, has been banned under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and the export-import policy of India.

There is a blanket ban on the export of birds from India, yet the illegal trade continues. Peacocks are still being smuggled. Their feathers are used to make costumes and fans.

ANI

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