Today is world sparrow day. This day has been called by the Nature forever society and other wildlife trusts across the world.
This event is to celebrate and create awareness about the simple,small and cute grey,brown and white feathered bird which once perched on our ledges or on trees around our house.
As a child of the 70's and 80's, we have woken up to the constant twitter of this bird, some times cursing the bird and pulling the blanket to cover our ears. They co-existed with us on the ledges and on tree tops around us chirping and giving company to all of us around.
In the afternoons, when mom and her friends would chit- chat and clean the grains, the sparrows used to hop around them and feed on the grains strewn. It was a pastime for me and my friends to watch their nest building activity . These sparrows built their nests on the ledge outside our house, and so they were taking the soft down feathers, twigs, dry leaves etc there and dropping them on the way . The footsteps to our house were strewn with twigs, feathers and other dry leaves. Gradually the eggs laid in the nest hatched and all we could see were the wide open triangular red beaks of these birdlings, since the nests were at a height. The parent birds transferred the food from their beaks to their young ones. The chirping, hopping, fluttering of the wings beside my windows was aural and visual delight then . It was simple bird watch like these that made our childhood so magical and cherishable.
Sadly, these birds which are neither flamboyant/exotic are nowhere around today.One has to make an effort to see these little birds.
Today spacious independent houses with gardens and trees are giving way to concrete jungle/apartment complexes, old grain shops turning to a/c super markets ,organic manure giving way to chemical pesticides , air pollution in the form of CFC’s and waves of the cell phone tower( these waves are supposed to destroy the life in the eggs of sparrow), all of us using clean packeted grains have all contributed to the decline. The twitter of the sparrows have been replaced by online twitters.
The human race is facing two conflicting situations today, one is a bright one where we enjoy the benefits of state of art technology in our daily life. Thanks to genetic engineering, Information Technology, space shuttles, press button living, push button publishing etc., On the other hand is the grim scenario looming large with population explosion,Global warming, depletion of resources, pollution of the basic elements of nature, ecological degradation etc.,
Preservation and protection of our environment is one of the important responsibility of mankind today. Many large animals like tigers(just 1411 left) and small animals or birds are facing extinction. It’s time some awareness is created about ecological degradation.
Thanks to some responsible societies and trusts for taking conservation measures to protect this simple ‘chittu kuruvi’ (as called in tamil)/ gubbachi in kannada,goriya in hindi). Hope everyone of us become more responsible about our surroundings and live an environmentally healthy life and bequeath a healthy world to our future generations and also letting the house sparrow survive else gen next will see sparrows only on internet.