By – Shruti Tripathi
Remember our wee feathered friends from childhood, Gauraiyas, as they were lovingly called. They used to dance around our balconies and fill the day with their incessant cheerful chirping. It is indeed an irony that sparrows, are rarely sighted anymore.
The World Sparrow Day is observed every year on March 20 with its primary goal to increase awareness about the depleting population of sparrows and other common birds worldwide. The idea was first put forth in 2010 and was later initiated by the ‘Nature Forever’ Society of India, in partnership with various international and national organizations. Now, the day is observed in several countries worldwide. This year’s theme is ‘I LOVE SPARROW’.
This World Sparrow Day, we must acknowledge their dwindling presence, and take necessary steps to conserve their reducing population.
Here’s what you can do to help them:
• Providing shelter – The contemporary and compact infrastructure designs in urban settings provide hardly any spaces for sparrows to make nests on. So, by installing small nests for them in balconies, roofs and small nooks, you can make them feel welcomed. One can also make these nests themselves using wood, scrap hard cardboard easily available at home.
• Increased green cover – with deforestation and lack of green spaces, sparrows have lost the habitat they used to thrive on. By planting more, and preferring native varieties of plant species rather than exotic ones, you can attract not only sparrows but also native insects which are vital food source for them. Additionally, sparrows act as a great pollinator and help in maintaining the balance of food cycle, so you’ll also be helping the environment. Win-win!
• Feeding them – make sure you put out some grains and provide water in a bowl, especially in areas which birds frequent.
• Say no to harmful insecticides and pesticides in your garden. Instead, use organic fertilizers which are not harmful to the environment and to birds.
Lastly, raising awareness about importance of sparrow conservation is extremely vital.
As a part of Our Awareness Campaign – कहां गई मेरे आंगन की गौरैया, We are celebrating the Save Sparrow Week from 13 March to 20 March. You can also join this by sending a Selfie of yours. If you have kept a bird house or water pot for birds in your home/ workplace, then take a selfie with that. Post it on social media using #selfieforsparrow #ecforbirds hashtags.
You can also WhatsApp us your Selfie on 9457950841 before 20. March. 2021. The Best Selfie will be honored by us on ‘World Sparrow Day 2021’.
So, this World Sparrow Day, urge your community, family and friends to actively contribute in helping sparrows, so that our mornings can once again witness the beautiful sight of several ‘gauriyas’ flocking around and chirping merrily.