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Beyond Amur falcons: Nagaland to undertake first bird count

Published: 11th Nov, 2022

Context

Nagaland is undertaking the first avian documentation exercise to go beyond Amur falcons, the migratory raptor that put the State on the world birding map. 

About

  • Exercise Name: Tokhü Emong Bird Count (TEBC) 
  • The exercise entails watching and counting birds from anywhere in Nagaland for at least 15 minutes and uploading the avian names on eBird (www.ebird.org/india), the bird recording platform.
  • The TEBC falls within the Salim Ali Bird Count, a nationwide event conducted by the Bombay Natural History Society.

Knowing the Species

  • Amur falcon (Falcon amurensis) is the world’s longest-travelling raptor.
  • The species is protected under the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 and included under Schedule IV.
  • It comes under the category of Least Concern under the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.


Tracking the Journey:

  • Duration: October-November
  • Amur falcons migrate to their wintering grounds in South Africa, usually arriving in large numbers during October in Nagaland and Manipur besides other places in the northeast, undertaking a yearly journey of about 20,000 km.
  • They leave the region in November after having enough food for their non-stop flight to Africa where they spend their winters.
  • From the Indian coast, they start crossing the Indian Ocean, a journey that takes about 4 days.
  • The front between the two main atmospheric pressure systems in the region, The Intertropical Convergence Zone, is moving southwestward at this time, bringing with it, prevailing southwestward winds.
  • The falcons are thought to use these winds to carry them towards Africa.
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