The Great Indian Bustard

About Great Indian Bustard: It is one of the heaviest flying birds (weighing up to 15kgs). They inhabit dry grasslands and scrublands on the Indian subcontinent.
Conservation Status:great Indian bustard

  • IUCN Red List: It is a Critically Endangered species with less than 150 birds left in the wild.
  • CITES: Appendix I
  • Wildlife (Protection) Act,1972: Schedule I

Habitat: It is endemic to the Indian subcontinent. It is found in Rajasthan (Desert National park), Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh in India and parts of Pakistan.

Characteristics:

  • Great Indian bustards are tall birds with long legs and long necks; the tallest individuals may stand up to 1.2 metres (4 feet) high.
  • Both the male and female are roughly the same size, with the largest individuals weighing 15 kg (33 pounds).
  • Males and females are distinguished by the colour of their feathers.
  • Food Habits: Great Indian bustards are omnivores. They prey on various arthropods, worms, small mammals, and small reptiles.

Threats:

  • Death by collision with infrastructure, particularly power lines and wind turbines
  • Depletion of grasslands
  • hunting
  • development of mines and human habitation in and around their habitats among others.

Conservation Initiatives:

  • Project Great Indian Bustard: It was launched by Rajasthan Government with the objective of conservation of the remaining population of critically endangered Great Indian Bustard(Ardeotis nigriceps) locally called Godawan.
  • What are Firefly bird diverters? These are flaps installed on power lines, a reason for many death among GIB. They work as reflectors for bird species like the GIB. Birds can spot them from a distance of about 50 meters and change their path of flight to avoid collision with power lines.
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