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GREAT INDIAN BUSTARDS (GIB)

GREAT INDIAN BUSTARDS (GIB)

Context:

The Government of India informed the Rajya Sabha that as on January 1 this year there were no Great Indian Bustards (GIB) in Kutch Bustard Sanctuary (KBS) in Gujarat’s Kutch district.

About GIB:

  • These are the largest among the 4 bustard species found in India.
  • Other 3 bustard species are lesser florican, MacQueen’s bustard, and the Bengal florican.
  • GIB is a large ground bird with a height of about one metre.
  • GIBs’ historic range included much of the Indian sub-continent but it has now shrunken to just 10% of it.
  • They feed on lizards, grass seeds, insects, etc.

Conservation Status:

  • Critically Endangered (Population decreasing).
  • It is protected under Wildlife Protection Act 1972 of India.

Habitat:

  • GIBs prefer grasslands as their habitats.
  • They spend most of their time on the ground with occasional flights to go from one part of their habitat to the other.
  • Its largest populations are found in Rajasthan.
  • They are terrestrial birds.

Found In:

  • This species was formerly widespread in Pakistan and India.
  • The bustard is critically endangered in Pakistan due to lack of protection and rampant hunting.
  • In India, the bird was historically found in Punjab, Haryana, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
  • Today the bustard is restricted to isolated pockets in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, and Rajasthan (shared with Pakistan).

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