1. Welcome to the EDUCATION.PK

    You are currently viewing our forum as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely FREE so please, join our community today!

    If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us at support@education.pk.
    Dismiss Notice

Article A Haven For Nature

Discussion in 'Nature کائنات' started by ahmeralirizvi, Apr 8, 2017.

  1. ahmeralirizvi

    ahmeralirizvi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2017
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    PART ONE

    From the beginning of September, I was planning to visit the coastal range of Sandspit and Hawksbay as an opening birdwatching trip for this season.

    Every year, a large number of migratory birds immigrate to our country from the freezing artic regions of Central Asia and spend 4 to 6 months here. During the whole season, I get going to the various types of wetland sites to enjoy the different flavors of birdwatching. I set out birdwatching excursions during September from the coastal areas of Sindh and Balochistan since the migratory birds reach first on the seashores.

    Finally on 14th of September, I made it happen to be at the selected spot at 6’o clock in the morning. I left home intending to make it a dual-purpose expedition of the day. The primarily aim was to watch and photograph the wading birds at shore and the secondary goal was to visit ‘Wetland Centre’, an information and research centre established and maintained by World Wide Fund for Nature at Sandspit.
     
  2. ahmeralirizvi

    ahmeralirizvi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2017
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    PART TWO

    The sunrise was expected at 6:16, however I had reached the site little earlier. The spot I chose to sit was a tidal estuary almost at halfway point of the Sandspit road. It is a very suitable birdwatching site surrounded by a typical mangrove forest. It is a prominent feeding ground for Greater Flamingoes, Reef Herons, Terns, Curlews, Godwits, Sandpipers and many other wadding birds. I set my blind deep inside the mangroves after negotiating nearly 200 meters walk through the sinking mudflat.

    In early hour of birdwatching, I inured to use only a handy 7x35 Binocular rather bothering to affix complicated mount and spotting scope etc. if it is likely to have good chances of sighting varieties of birds and in larger number, then I set all other optical apparatus on that location. Otherwise, it tends to move me to another spot.

    Soon after the sunrise, I spotted a small flock appeared to be like Teals, took flight from far-end and was approaching towards my hide. As the birds came closer, they were identified as Bar Tailed Godwits. Many times I have been confused between Godwits and Teals from distance, since they have identical flying pattern.
     
  3. ahmeralirizvi

    ahmeralirizvi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2017
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    PART THREE

    After several minutes I saw a large flock of Greater Flamingoes flying over mangrove line at distance. Initially they were roaming here and there in a haphazard formation then they formed a “V” and gave me a chance to count them easily. They were 42 with a mix of some Lesser Flamingoes. Then another large flock appeared near the first one and finally they all flown out of the area.

    I strolled my binocular back to the water-spread and spotted many Reef Herons wadding and catching small fish at the other end. Some 10-12 Coots like birds were also floating faraway that they could not be identified exactly. Unlike appearance, their feeding behavior and movements were absolutely unfamiliar with that of the coots. Now it was needed to watch them through a powerful scope. Meanwhile, I heard the whistle of Curlews in the sky. I turned towards them. It was a small flock of 8 Curlews passing by. I kept trailing my binocular until they settled somewhere at the shoreline. When I returned to those unidentified feeders, they all had flushed away. I could only guess they were, if not, Coots then Pochards or Tufted Ducks. These two species of duck family take after coots from distance and they also visit this area occasionally.

    Though, spending two hours is not enough time to enjoy a commendable birdwatching, I winded it up earlier that day and got out of the swamp.

    My next destination was “Wetland Centre”, situated along the Sandspit road opposite to the Hut no. 103. The environment and habitat around the Wetland Centre add Importance to its significance. The mangrove forest is one of the vital assets around the centre. Mangroves serve as nurseries for many species of fish and shrimps and support a variety of marine life. A large number of both migratory and resident birds feed and nest in the mangrove vegetation. Mangroves provide nutritional fodder firewood, timber and medicines as well. The beach area opposite to the centre is also famous for Green turtles that come to the shore in order to lay eggs in sand during their breeding season from September to January. Few Olive-Ridley turtles also visit this beach every year for nesting.
     
  4. ahmeralirizvi

    ahmeralirizvi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2017
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    PART FOUR

    This was my first visit to the Wetland Centre and in point of fact, I did not know very much about the functions of the centre. The representative of WWF at Wetland Centre warmly welcomed me and introduced with other workers and volunteers, who were engaged there on various projects. After introduction, he briefed me little about the marine life of Pakistan. He also defined the aims and objectives of WWF-Pakistan and the various functions of the Wetland Centre.

    Pakistan is one of the richest countries in respect to natural resources and biodiversity. Unfortunately, the wildlife and environment have never been given needful importance by the public as well as by the controlling authorities. Consequently the natural assets of the country are running short or wiping out day by day. Besides natural disasters like droughts, floods and water contamination etc, human intrusion and violation are also major reasons of devastation of natural assets. Suburban and industrial expansion, deforestation, use of pesticides, excessive hunting and poaching of wildbirds and animals are some of the examples. The main reason of destruction to flora and fauna by people is the lack of awareness of the importance of ecosystem. Illiteracy is another issue but the inadvertency by literate people towards the conservation of our natural resources, wildlife and environment is more adverse.
    The aims of the WWF-Pakistan are to preserve genetic species and ecosystem diversity, ensuring the use of renewable natural resources. In addition, it aims to promote the actions to reduce pollution and the wasteful exploitation and consumption of resources and energy.

    Wetland Centre is a unit that focuses on public awareness and educational programs mainly in regard to the wetland system as well as overall ecological network. The centre is involved in resource material development, conservation activities, training of field research staff and information dissemination.

    The building of the Wetland Centre comprises of different sections. Display Hall, at entrance, is outfitted with many beautiful and informative charts, maps and posters about the various species of marine world. Resource material, such as pamphlets, booklets and education packs are also available for visitors. A very large model of the entire coastline of Sindh and Balochistan is one of the remarkable stuffs placed in the display area.
     
  5. ahmeralirizvi

    ahmeralirizvi Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2017
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    LAST PART

    There is also a Conference Hall with a capacity of 50 audiences. The hall is equipped with modern audio and visual display facilities. Documentaries and visual presentations on wetlands, and other environmental issues are also available in Data Resource Unit.

    The laboratory in Wetland Centre is engaged in research on marine biology and providing basic facilities for the scientific studies of wetland flora and fauna.

    The centre also conducts interactivities and event for students and volunteers as a part of ecosystem awareness and maintenance program. These activities include Bird watching, Turtle watching, Nature Excursion, Sanctuaries and National Parks visit, Boat-Trip to Mangrove forest, Mangrove Plantation, Beach Cleaning and many other environmental concerned workshops.

    The facilities and services available at the Wetland Centre and the activities being conducted there were absolutely beyond my expectation before personally visiting the centre. The Wetlands Centre is said to be a milestone towards the aspirations of the WWF-Pakistan.

    How better if WWF or Sindh Wildlife Department or any other environmental concern set up similar projects also on other places especially in interior Sindh, where there are larger wetland complexes and there is more need to make people aware of their precious ecological assets.

    On my way back, I was thinking how efficacious if more and more people visit Wetland Centre, conceive the message of WWF and become more mindful to the importance of our plants, birds, animals and above all our water resources like oceans, rivers and wetlands. Our natural resources are dwindling away fast. We can sustain them by giving a little primacy and by supporting the efforts of environmental organizations.