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Sighting Storks
Published by Sunil K. Choudhury, 03 Jan 2004
Status and distribution of greater adjutant storks (Leptoptilos dubius) in the Ganga and Kosi river floodplains near Bhagalpur, Bihar
WTI has involved itself in many classic Rapid Action Projects that have helped conservation, but one that sticks in the memory is that of rescuing falling Greater Adjutant Stork chicks in Assam using circus-style safety nets. Therefore, when another Greater Adjutant Stork RAP came up, we were ready for it. This one, although equally important, was not as charismatic as the earlier one; it only involved a survey. The results, though, were equally dramatic—the first confirmed sighting of the endangered stork species in Bihar. The Greater Adjutant Stork is one of the most endangered of storks globally and India has 80 % of the global population of 1000 birds. Any addition to the population of this species by sighting them from previously unknown areas is of immense  onservation value. This range extension of the species further west of Assam is commendable and the Vikramshila Biodiversity Research and Education Centre require kudos for conducting the surveys. The Gangetic and Kosi floodplains have thrown up another important species to conserve and the Wildlife Trust of India is committed to help establish the breeding status of the species in this ecosystem.

Vivek Menon
Executive Director, WTI
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