By Our Staff Reporter
IMPHAL, May 16 : After 42 years of tireless work, the Forest Department has been able to successfully breed and produce offspring of Nongin, the State bird, at Manipur Zoological Garden , Iroisemba.
Since the establishment of Manipur Zoological garden on October 2, 1976, the Department has been working tirelessly to breed and increase Nongin population by keeping the bird in a different area/space for reproduction.
Nongin, which is included in one of the endangered list of birds, is found in Shiroi and Jesami area of Ukhrul district.
With the aim of saving the endangered species, several steps and actions have been taken up the Department for many years.
According to a source, specialised areas were allocated specially for breeding/mating of three pairs of Nongin at the Zoo and at Langol area, under the sponsorship of Central Zoo Authority and CAMPA.
The source further maintained that the Zoo staff were allowed to take care of the birds but no other individuals were allowed to enter these areas. The Nongin birds began laying eggs during the first week of April and each Nongin pair produced six, four and seven eggs.
The source said that after the eggs were laid, the male birds were kept apart from the females and the females were made to incubate the eggs for almost two weeks.
It stated that two eggs at the zoo hatched on May 14, while the rest of the eggs have not hatched.
The source further claimed that the newly hatched chicks are healthy and the staff concerned are keeping a strict vigil and providing intensive care to the birds.
It further claimed that the eggs are often not capable of hatching into chicks as the Nonging male kills the female, but since they were kept aside this time, the eggs hatched into healthy chicks.
Speaking to media persons, Environmentalist Dr Kh Shamungou expressed happiness at being successful in reproducing Nongin chicks and opined that the initiative would be more successful if a grand Nongin project is taken up at the earliest.
He claimed that a female bird belonging to Nongin family, ‘Waba’ was rescued from Nambol Kaboching ten years ago. The female Waba was kept with a Nongin female where a mix breed of chicks were produced. Following that experiment, the Forest Department suggested the breeding of Nongin birds, Dr Shamungou claimed.
By Our Staff Reporter