A sub-adult greater adjutant stork named “Arshiya” by her rescuers was today released back to the freedom of natural environment at Boragaon at the outskirt of Guwahati city at the initiatives of Aaranyak, a premier conservation organitation in the region, in cooperation with Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and College of Veterinary Science, Khanapara here.
“Arshiya”(the bird) was found in marooned condition in Dadara village, near Guwahati. She was safely rescued by local villagers and a group of conservationist comprising Ms Purnima Devi Barman of Aaranyak, Dr Parag Deuri of Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and Dr Samsul Ali of College of Veterinary Science, Khanapara. After many days of treatment at Assam State Zoo, this bird was released back to the wild at Boragaon near Guwahati by C. Bora, Divisional Forest Officer of Assam State Zoo in presence of local villager of Dadara and other conservationists.
“Arshiya” is a precious member of globally endangered Greater Adjutant Stork clan that is distributed in Assam and Bihar in India and few places in Cambodia. The bird’s global population is less than 1000 and is currently facing extinction threat.
Boragaon is a popular feeding habitat of this bird. After it was released, this bird has joined a group of about hundred of them feeding at Boragaon dumping ground. The bird was named after a very young school student of Sarala Birla Gyanjyoti School, Ms Arshiya Mahanta for her dedication and passion for conservation of wildlife and towards motivating young generations for conservation of wildlife in Assam.
“We are very proud to be a part of her rehabilitation efforts and Assam State Zoo team is committed for such endeavours in futures”, said Chandan Bora Divisional Forest Officer of Assam State Zoo.
“It is rare to see the kind of effort that Purnima and her team have been making to save the greater adjutant stork from extinction. The rescue story of “Arshiya”, the bird released today once again goes to show their sincerely, devotion and passion towards nature in general and Greater Adjutant in particular” commented by Partha Sarathi Mahanta, Superintendent of Police of Kamrup (rural) district, who is deeply involved for conservation of Greater Adjutant Stork in Kamrup (rural) district of Assam.
“We appeal all fellow nature lovers and government forest department to take the community into confidence and help to negate the extinction threat of this bird” said Ms. Purnima Devi Barman of Aaranyak who played a key role in rescue , rehabilitation and release of this bird.
Dr. M.L. Smith, Forest Veterinary Officer of Assam State Zoo said, “Arshya was under my care and I am very happy to see her freedom again. I am deeply touch today when she flies and joined other friends”
The rescue team doctors Dr Parag Deuri of BNHS and Dr Samsul Ali of College of Veterinary Sciences provided in initial critical care for this bird and after stabilization it was admitted to Assam State Zoo for further care.
Aaranyak team lead by Ms Purnima Devi Barman is extensively working for conservation of this species since 2009 with support from Conservation Leadership Programme and Mohammad Bin Species Conservation Fund through community conservation works in various Greater Adjutant habitats in Assam and Dadara & Pacharia near Guwahati, where about more than 50 % of its global population could be seen.