In a shocking turn of events, more than 1000 migratory birds of about 10-12 different species were found dead under mysterious circumstances in Rajasthan. The dead birds were discovered at Sambhar Salt Lake, the country’s largest inland saltwater lake near Jaipur.
Located 80km south-west of the city of Jaipur, Sambhar Lake witnesses a vast number of tourists and ornithologists from across the world during the winter season as it hosts thousands of migratory birds. The death of these birds came to fore when a few ornithologists went to Sambhar Lake and were taken aback to see the dead birds, including plovers, common coots, black winged stilts, northern shovelers, ruddy shelducks and pied avocets across the lake. Veterinarians suspect water contamination or algae poisoning to be the primary reason behind the deaths. A medical team from Jaipur has collected a few carcasses, while water samples are being sent to a laboratory in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh for further examination. While officials claim that the death toll is around 1,500; the locals claim that the number of dead birds could be around 5,000.
The incident of mysterious bird deaths is a second in Rajasthan within a week; thirty-seven Demoiselle cranes were found dead in Vijay Sagar Lake in the Alwar district of Rajasthan on November 7. However, no link has been found in the two mass-death incidents, as the cranes supposedly died after eating poisoned grain. Officials have sent their viscera too for investigation.