Owlet chicks on Lord Jagannath’s daru to be rescued

Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, May 4:

The principal chief conservator of forests (PCCF), Wildlife and chief wildlife warden of Odisha has decided to dispatch a team to rescue the spotted owlet chicks perched in a nest on the holy neem tree identified as the daru for Lord Jagannath at Kharipadia in Jagatsinghpur district.

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The tree, it may be noted, is set to be felled in the next 3-4 days.

In a letter to the Jagatsinghpur collector today, the PCCF said the rescue team would be headed by the divisional forest officer (DFO), Cuttack and sought the cooperation of the district administration in the rescue act.

The PCCF got going after noted wildlife activist and Secretary of Wildlife Society of Odisha (WSO) Biswajit Mohanty drew his attention to the urgent need to rescue the chicks.

“Felling the tree without rescuing them will result in their sure death. As spotted owlets are a protected species under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, we strongly urge you to take necessary steps for their protection,” Mohanty said in his e-mailed letter.

Mohanty has suggested that the fledgling owlets be reared in the Nandankanan zoo till they are able to fly and help sought from captive bird breeders in Bhubaneswar with knowledge of how wild chicks are reared.

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