Pune: Forest department bans photography of Amur Falcon on Lonavala ghats

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Pune: Forest department bans photography of Amur Falcon on Lonavala ghats

Pune: The forest department officials have banned photography of Amur Falcon – the migratory birds from Mongolia – at the Lonavala ghats. The decision has been taken in view to protect the birds and avoid the unnecessary human interference with nature.

A warning board (in Marathi) has also been installed at the Lonavala grasslands informing people that “going near the migratory birds and clicking their photos has been banned and action will be taken against whosoever indulges in such activities.”

Rahul Patil, Deputy Conservator of Forests (Pune Division) took to twitter to announce the decision on Tuesday (January 12) evening. Patil has tweeted an image “Stop, Don’t Shoot. Let them rest” along with an appeal to the photographers who are crowding the Lonavala grasslands to grab a picture of the migratory species.

Patil, in his tweet says, “Photography of Amur Falcon has been Banned on the Lonavla Ghats. This Migratory Falcons travel hundreds of Miles & Halt for Rest. To avoid getting Perturbed by photographers, though It is important to take photographs, saving the Species is as important, we have taken this Decision.”

The Amur falcon is a small raptor of the falcon family. It breeds in south-eastern Siberia and Northern China before migrating in large flocks across India and over the Arabian Sea to winter in Southern Africa. They visit India during their migration journey. This migration happens in large numbers and the sheer size of the flock makes it a great spectacle, something every wildlife enthusiast must witness at least once in their lifetime. Fortunately for us, these handsome falcons make a stop-over in India.

The Amur falcon feeds mainly late in the evening or early in the morning capturing a wide range of insects in the air or on the ground. They capture most of their prey in flight, sometimes by hovering, but will also pick prey by alighting on the ground.

The winter diet appears to be almost entirely made up of insects but they take small birds, mammals and amphibians to feed their young in their breeding range. The rains in Africa produce swarms of termites, locusts, ants and beetles that provide ample food.

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