Mysterious disease: Over 170 peacocks die in two days in Tharparkar

The unknown disease was reported in Kehri, Peloro, Sarangho, Sohrab, Wasatipoto, Sayon and other villages.


Sajid Bajeer February 01, 2011

MITHI: Over 170 peacocks have died mysteriously in just two days in Tharparkar district.

The unknown disease was reported in Kehri, Peloro, Sarangho, Sohrab, Wasatipoto, Sayon and other villages. Residents of these areas told Daily Express that once the peacocks contract the disease, they die the next day. The birds develop a throat infection and no one has been able to confirm what is causing it.

On Monday, a wildlife department team visited the area where a peacock had become sick. The team injected the bird but the experiment was unsuccessful and it died soon after.

Dost Ali Baloch, a resident, said that they fear these birds may become extinct if the wildlife department fails to find a cure. He urged the authorities to take action before it is too late.

Wildlife officials said that they took some samples of the dead peacock and have sent them to a laboratory in Islamabad. “We hope to receive the results within a week,” an official said. He agreed that the department needs to take preventive measures soon to stop this disease from claiming more lives.

Peacocks are mostly found in the jungles of Tharparkar and India but they also roam freely in nearby villages. Due to their aesthetic value, hunting of these birds is voluntarily banned by residents. Children sometimes keep them as pets while the adults make sure they leave food outside their houses.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 2nd, 2011.

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