Vulture conservation Project


At Surat, Mahuva, Dang.




    You will be surprised to know that vulture population in Asia has declined by 98% Vultures, though they are birds of prey, they need only on carcasses. These scavengers hence check the spread of diseases which are propagated due to decaying carcasses. If we so not take some concrete steps in immediately, soon this important link of Nature’s food chain will be lost. Vultures have almost vanished from many states in India. Its population in Gujarat, 12 years back was about 15,000, today there are only about 950 vultures left in Gujarat. Nature Club Surat along with BCSG has taken up the challenge to save the vulture in wild since 2005.



Nature Club Surat has always worked for the conservation of Nature’s Heritage. We decided was time to act and act fast! We started with whatever little money and material we had one step at a time. A survey showed that there were about 60 to 70 vultures around Hazira about 30kms away from Surat. We started providing diclofenac (harmful drug for vultures ) free food. Volunteers themselves started collecting cattle that had died due to road accident. Vultures started flocking at the site. Soon food was not enough so cattle breeders were contacted, educated, requested and cooperation sought and more food was available. In this way, the vulture conservation project was launched. Obstacles aroused and were dealt with. We are happy and proud to inform you that the vulture population at Hazira today has risen to about 83.



Degradation of Natural Habitat:



Vultures prefer huge trees for their roosting and nesting. However, large trees and being cut both in the forest area and near human habitations.



Food Scarcity:



Use of carcasses by human for skin, etc. and increasing population of stray dogs is creating scarcity of food for vultures.



Toxic effects:



Scientists have found that vultures eating dead animals that have been treated with drug called Diclofenac develop toxicity of liver and internal gout and ultimately die.



Nature Club Surat conducts the following activities for the conservation of vultures:



Vulture Awareness Programs:



Vulture awareness programs are conducted with audio visual tools especially in schools and other organizations near areas inhabited by vultures.



School children are educated about the need of conservation of vultures. This has proved very beneficial because these school children now immediately inform our volunteers when they see sick or injured birds. They also keep us informed about any new nests they may have spotted.



Awareness programs and direct interactions with locals and cattle breeding tribes (rabaries).



Vulture feeding site by Nature Club Surat:



Vulture feeding site at Hazira, Surat was established by the club In 2006.



“Diclofenac free” food is regularly provided at the site.



Dogs and other disturbances are kept away from the site.



Substituting meloxicam in place of diclofenac:



Meloxicam is a safe substitute for diclofenac but is a little costlier. Nature Club Surat is distributing meloxicam all over Gujarat at subsidized rates.



We also conduct regular meetings with veterinary doctors to make them aware of the dangers of diclofenac.



Vulture rescue, treatment & release:



Nature Club Surat rescues ill or injured vultures and provides treatment from expert veterinary doctors.



Huge cages have been fabricated to keep the vultures till they recover.



These vultures are released back into the wild when they are fit enough to fly.



Keeping an observant eye on:



Nature Club Surat regularly monitors vultures, their nests and their habitat. Visits to vulture sites with students and locals help in collecting relevant data.



Every year, vulture census is conducted by the club.



What you can do to save the VULTURE?


If you happen to see a vulture in need of help, inform the club immediately



If you are a veterinary doctor, please say no to diclofenac, use meloxicam.



Instead of burying dead animals, donate them for our vulture feeding site.



If you find any veterinary doctor using diclofenac, please report to the district veterinary officer.