Pittas find new haven in Odisha districts
- The first-ever census of mangrove pitta birds was conducted in two coastal districts of Odisha, yielding 179 sightings.
- Mangrove pitta birds are a nearly threatened species located in a few regions of eastern India, notably Odisha’s Bhitarkanika and West Bengal’s Sundarbans.
Points to Ponder:
- A census of mangrove pitta birds was undertaken for the first time in the districts of Kendrapara and Jagatsingpur in Odisha, India.
- Mangrove pitta birds are a near-endangered species found only in a few regions of eastern India, including Bhitarkanika in Odisha and the Sundarbans in West Bengal.
- The census concentrated on the mangrove patches along the two districts’ beaches.
- The census was conducted using the point count method, with 32 teams deployed in 32 pre-identified parts.
- To perform the census, the teams either hiked into the forest or used country boats in waterways.
- The census gathered data on the distribution, habitat, and breeding habits of birds in coastal mangroves.
- During the census, 179 unique mangrove pitta birds were counted.
- The biggest number of birds was discovered in the mangroves near the mouth of the Mahipura River within Bhitarkanika National Park.
- The mangrove pitta forages on the ground and rests on trees and is found in India’s coastal mangrove forests.
- Gopinath Sudarshan Yadav, the DFO of Rajnagar Mangrove Forest Division, provided the above information concerning the census and the mangrove pitta birds.
- Pitta birds are small to medium-sized passerine bird family.
- Pitta birds are found in tropical parts of Asia, Africa, and Australia and number around 40 species.
- They are famous among birdwatchers and avian enthusiasts due to their brilliantly colored plumage.
- Pitta birds live in a wide range of environments, including forests, mangroves, grasslands, and wetlands.
- They primarily consume insects, snails, and other tiny invertebrates.
- Many Pitta bird species are threatened by habitat loss and fragmentation, as well as killing and trapping for the pet trade.
- Some Pitta bird species are migratory, traveling considerable distances each year to mate and feed.
- Pitta birds are significant seed dispersers as well as indicators of the health of tropical forest ecosystems.
- Pitta bird conservation activities include habitat restoration and protection, as well as steps to prevent hunting and trapping.
- The Mangrove Pitta (Pitta megarhyncha) is a nearly threatened species found in a few regions of eastern India, notably Odisha’s Bhitarkanika and West Bengal’s Sundarbans.