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Seabird flies from Cape Town to Malvan

Updated on: 27 June,2023 08:14 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Ranjeet Jadhav |

It might have gotten disoriented due to winds and come to the coast, say experts

Seabird flies from Cape Town to Malvan

The white-tailed tropic seabird found at Malvan

A white-tailed tropic seabird was found in Malvan, Sindhudurg, after what could be termed a remarkable journey of around 3,000 km. The bird was originally tagged in Cape Town in South Africa, which was discovered due to a ring on its leg. This is the first-ever ring recovery record for this species in India.

Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) scientist Mrugank Prabhu said, “On Sunday a student of professor Hasan Khan found an exhausted white-tailed tropic bird at Dhuriwada near the Malvan coast. As I have been involved in the ringing process of the birds on a BNHS project, the professor informed me about the same. When I started to gather more details based on the ring the bird had on its leg, it came to light that this bird was ringed in May 2022 by Dr Mark Brown, a scientist associated with programme SAFRING run by the University of Cape Town.”

The ring that helped identify it
The ring that helped identify it

Prabhu told mid-day that the bird is an immature white-tailed tropical seabird whose species lives in the ocean (pelagic) and is rarely sighted near the coast. He added that the bird might have gotten disoriented due to monsoon winds and come to the coast. “The bird has covered a distance of around 3,000 km to Malvan after it was tagged in Cape Town.”

The exhausted bird was handed over to the Maharashtra Forest Department staff and veterinarians are currently tending it. It will be released in a day or two, once it is fit again. The white-tailed tropic bird’s range encompasses a broad band of tropical and subtropical areas. The birds can be seen from the southern Indian Ocean and western and central Pacific to tropical and subtropical parts of the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean.

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