Farmers turn to organic farming to save cranes
Monday, 13 January 2014 | Moushumi Basu
In a bid to help the conservation of the world’s tallest flying birds — the IUCN red-listed Sarus Crane — the farmers around Bhoj wetlands in Madhya Pradesh, are turning to organic farming to check the harmful effects of pesticides. The internationally recognised Bhoj wetland is an Important Bird Area (IBA). A watch group ‘Sarus Mitra’ has also been created to keep the cranes safe from other anthropogenic threats.
Once seen in hundreds, the sarus crane population has drastically declined from the Bhoj wetlands. As per reports, around 160 individuals were counted in 2001 which reduced to 24 in 2008. This year, only 10 have been counted. Alarmed by such drastic decline, the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) NGO that works on wildlife protection teamed up with a local organisation called “Bhopal Birds” set up Rapid Action Project to save these birds.