Captive Breeding Of State Bird Underway

IMPHAL, May 15: Manipur‘s State bird, animal and flower have all become threatened species, said Chief Conservator of forests, RK Srivastava, who is also the Member Secretary of State Biodiversity Board.

Speaking to The Sangai Express during coverage of a spot painting competition organized today at the Luwangsangbam campus of Manipur Forest Training School in connection with the International Biological diversity Day 2011 observation, Srivastava said as a part of conservation measures undertaken by the State Government, captive breeding of Nongin bird is underway at the Langol Hill Range complex of Sangai Second Home.

Informing that State animal Sangai (brow antlered deer) and flower Shirui (Siroy) Lily have become threatened species, he said captive breeding of the State bird is being closely monitored at the Langol Hill Range facility where two male and three female birds are being protected.

It is informed that after years of apprehension that sighting of Nongin bird in the State would be very remote, some villagers from Ukhrul handed over a bird to the Zoo authorities.

Subject experts had cited environmental degradation, disturbances to natural habitats, rampant poaching as some of the causes for these symbols of the State becoming threatened species.

In another revelation, the Forest officer said the delicious Pengba, which is also accorded status of State fish, has totally vanished from its natural habitat even though the said species is being nurtured in ponds.

He also quoted report of the International Union of Conservation of Nature that out of fish varieties found in the State seven species have been categorized as threatened ones and the status consequently conveyed to the State Fisheries Department by the State Biodiversity Board.

While confiding that the Board is in consultation with experts of a Lucknow-based institute to chalk up contingency program for conservation of the seven threatened fish species, Srivastava disclosed that the Board has already identified 166 sacred sites (umang lai) in the four valley districts for initiation of conservation of these local deity worship places.

Stating that documentation of wild plants, food providing plants, insects and herbs/plants used in dyeing of clothes found in N Songlung village of Sadar Hills and Thongam Mondum in Thoubal district had been completed, he  the Board is planning for similar documentation work  at three locations including Shirui hill.

Member Secretary of the Board further informed that two rest houses at Koubru Leikha and a similar facility at Tangjeng Pat (lake) near Sugnu have already been constructed.

Meanwhile, the spot painting competition organized today is informed to be in connection with the International Biodiversity Day observance that falls on May 22.

Over 80 student participants from different schools of the State took part in the competition, which was held in two categories.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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