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The Forest department organises bird watching festival for Noida students

On World Wetland Day, Noida officials conducted a birdwatching festival for school students at Surajpur on 2nd February. The commissioner of police, district magistrate and national cadet corps cadets were also present at the event along with the school students. The aim was to introduce students to the many types of species of birds that live in the city. It also increases awareness regarding wetlands and their conservation. According to the Forest officials, the theme for this year’s event is- ‘It’s time for wetland restoration’.

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“Wetlands are an important habitat for several bird species, many insects and reptiles. It is important to conserve these watershed areas for the several benefits they provide to the overall environment,” said district magistrate Suhas LY.

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The police will handle and look out for the issues related to the encroachment stated by the Commissioner of police Laxmi Singh. As per the latest statistics recorded through online mapping by the forest authority in 2015, Noida has 743 wetlands, continuous work is underway in order to preserve them. Earlier as per records, there were 1,200 wetlands but most of them are now lost due to encroachments. 

“We regularly keep a track of these wetlands and ensure periodic cleaning. Some of these have been encroached upon. It is important that we continue awareness drives so that people know about the importance of keeping the wetlands clean and preserved,” said P K Srivastava, divisional forest officer.

Events like these are important in order to teach the future generation about the importance of natural habitats like wetlands and birds for our environment.

“Wetland conservation is important but that does not mean cosmetic gardening. True conservation happens when nature is left undisturbed. The bird count at Okhla bird sanctuary has been reducing over the years,” said Vikrant Tongad, an environmentalist.

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