alexa Waste as a Resource for Avifauna: Review and Survey of the Avifaunal Composition in and around Waste Dumping Sites and Sewage Water Collection Sites (India)
E-ISSN: 2252-5211
International Journal of Waste Resources
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Waste as a Resource for Avifauna: Review and Survey of the Avifaunal Composition in and around Waste Dumping Sites and Sewage Water Collection Sites (India)

Satya Prakash Mehra*, Sarita Mehra, Mohib Uddin, Vikas Verma, Hrishika Sharma, Tehlu Singh, Gurpreet Kaur, Tasso Rimung and Himmat Ram Kumhar

Rajputana Society of Natural History, Village Ramnagar, PO Malah, Bharatpur, Rajasthan, India

*Corresponding Author:
Mehra SP
Rajputana’s Shakuntalam
Village Ramnagar, PO Malah
Bharatpur 321001 Rajasthan, India
Tel: +91 9414165690
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: July 03, 2017; Accepted Date: July 10, 2017; Published Date: July 17, 2017

Citation: Mehra SP, Mehra S, Uddin M, Verma V, Sharma H, et al. (2017) Waste as a Resource for Avifauna: Review and Survey of the Avifaunal Composition in and around Waste Dumping Sites and Sewage Water Collection Sites (India). Int J Waste Resour 7: 289. doi: 10.4172/2252-5211.1000289

Copyright: © 2017 Mehra SP, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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Urbanization has lead to the challenge of waste disposal. The dumping sites are affecting the natural habitats in and around urban areas. The most eye catching group of animals, the birds had used these modified habitats. The reconnaissance surveys were conducted for eleven sites of the seven municipal areas Rajasthan and Punjab states of India to assess the avifaunal composition. The observations of bird species using modified habitats in form of solid and liquid (effluent/ sewage) waste sites were assessed. The dumping site at Mount Abu (Sirohi, Rajasthan) was no more in existence. Since authors were involved in studies since last two decades, therefore, past records were also included for such sites.

It was observed that such sites of waste collection (solid and liquid) were harboring 100 species of birds with three additional species in past, accounting 103 bird species belonging to 37 families in 11 orders. Terrestrial species accounted 53 whereas wetland bird species were 37 species and 11 species were wetland dependent. Around 58 species were resident, 18 migrants and 27 species resident with local movements. Thirteen species of global interest were recorded from the sites. Three of these species were under critically endangered and were the past records. Two endangered species, one vulnerable species and seven near threatened species were recorded from the investigation sites. Sites of Udaipur and Bharatpur were having the maximum diversity of birds.

Besides scavenger and raptors species, egrets and passerines were of common occurrence. It was observed that the sites were mainly used for the feeding purposes and if the surrounding habitats were used for the other life cycle processes by the birds. The dumping sites with the organic (biodegradable and animal) wastes could be prepared and further modified as per the nature’s rule to develop the birding sites for the species of global interest. The animal waste management through reviving bio-disposal mechanism through scavenger birds could be ideal model for revenue generation through birding.


Human; Nature; Environment


Importance of the theme

Twenty-first century can be characterized by tremendous growth of urban areas along with associated process of globalization and unification of urban environments. Despite of the fact that cities occupy just 2% of the Earth's surface, their inhabitants use 75% of the planet's natural resources [1,2]. Due to changes in the habitats and the direct human disturbances, the urban development processes affect avifauna by various means, which might be positive or negative [3]. However, some bird species can thrive in human-modified landscapes, if the habitats retain ecologically important features [1,2,4]. There are ample of studies on relation of the landscapes with the abundance of animal populations especially where the anthropogenic activities are affecting the natural characteristics of the habitats [2,5-7] and owing to the home ranges this is the case particularly for birds [4]. The birds are the most eye catching group of animals among all at any site or habitats whether wild or modified [8].

India is facing a challenge of the ever increasing urban population due to lack of available services and resources resulting into the heap of garbage dump and sewer waste water [9]. The unpleasant odor of the decomposing wastes infuses everywhere. However, the garbage dumping and the waste water sites are being used by diverse species of invertebrates and vertebrates [10,11]. The surveys were undertaken by the authors to assess the avifaunal species of such sites from selected urban lands of Rajasthan and Punjab. The paper enlisted the species of birds recorded from investigation sites.

Materials and Methods

Study area

Seven urban areas from two states of India, four from Rajasthan and three from Punjab were surveyed by the authors with the prime objective to assess the avifaunal composition of all the sites of dumping grounds as well as waste water collection irrespective of their status identified by the respective municipal bodies. The selection of urban areas was based on the authors working areas. The urban spaces included municipal areas of Udaipur, Mount Abu, Bharatpur and Kota from Rajasthan and Nawanshahr (Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar), Moga and Ludhiana from Punjab (Figure 1). Six of them are district headquarters whereas Mount Abu falls in Sirohi District of Rajasthan.


Figure 1: Location map of the investigation sites.

Seven urban areas had eleven sites under two broad types of habitats – seven terrestrial habitats in form of dumping grounds (T) and four aquatic habitats in form of waste water collection ponds or effluent/ sewage treatment plant (A). The habitats as per the sites are given in Table 1.

Sr. No. Urban Area with waste disposal site/s Site/s of observations Code Used Major Type of Habitat
1 Bharatpur Dumping site near NH 11 T1 Terrestrial
2 Scattered ponds and nallahs (drains) A1 Aquatic
3 Kota Garbage Dumping Ground T2 Terrestrial
4 Thermal Ash Pond A2 Aquatic
5 Mt Abu Chimney Site T3 Terrestrial
6 Udaipur Baleecha Dumping Site T4 Terrestrial
7 Tetardi Dumping Site T5 Terrestrial
8 Ahar nallah (drain) A3 Aquatic
9 Moga Garbage Dumping Ground T6 Terrestrial
10 Nawanshahr (Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar) Garbage Dumping Ground T7 Terrestrial
11 Ludhiana Budha nallah (drain) A4 Aquatic

Table 1: Habitats as per the sites.


Over all, eleven sites of seven urban areas were visited by the authors in different seasons over the year (Jan 2016 - Jan 2017).

The surveys and scientific samplings of the investigation area were started from 1999 onwards from Udaipur, 2002 onwards from Mount Abu, 2007 onwards from Bharatpur and 2014 onwards from rest of the sites. The present observations includes records from all the sites for the year 2016 but include past observations also to enlist all the bird species which show their presence on waste disposal sites. Direct sighting records at the site and identification of the species were done during the observations.

The terrestrial habitat sites are symbolized by “T” and aquatic habitat sites are symbolized by “A” in the present observations. The symbol T or A is having serial number for each site of observations (Table 1).

Out of the eleven sites, Mount Abu site (T3) is not in existence due to shifting of the dumping ground from Mount Abu to foothills at Abu Road. Therefore, past records from the Chimney site (T3) of Mount Abu were undertaken by authors. Nomenclature is used as per Manakadan and Pittie [12]. Habitat wise checklist is prepared as per Kumar et al. [13].

Observations and Results

Species richness and status

Around 103 bird species belonging to 37 families in 11 orders were recorded from the study area (Tables 2 and 3). Based on the reviews and past observations of the states of Rajasthan and Punjab in general, the status of the species in the investigation area shows that 58 species (ca 56%) are residents, 18 species are migrants and rest 27 resident species have local migratory nature. Specifically, there are slight differences in the status of the species at local levels due to local movements as per the climatic changes. From the present investigation and recent time period maximum 86 bird species were recorded from sites of Udaipur followed by 75 from Bharatpur sites. Three species in each case was enlisted from the past records. The observations of Chimney Dumping Ground (Mt Abu) are based on past records [11].

Sr. No. Common Name Scientific Name Habitat Observations from the Urban Areas
Bharatpur Kota Mt Abu* Udaipur Moga SBSN Ludhiana
1 Grebes Podicipedidae                
1 Little Grebe (5) Tachybaptus ruficollis (Pallas, 1764) W x x xo x x x x
2 Cormorants/ Shags Phalacrocoracidae                
2 Little Cormorant (28) Phalacrocorax niger (Vieillot, 1817) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
3 Herons, Egrets and Bitterns Ardeidae                
3 Little Egret (49) Egretta garzetta (Linnaeus, 1766) W x x xo x x x x
4 Large Egret or Great Egret (45-46) Casmerodius albus (Linnaeus, 1758) W x 0 xo x 0 0 x
5 Median Egret or Intermediate Egret (47, 48) Mesophoyx intermedia (Wagler, 1829) W x x xo x 0 0 x
6 Cattle Egret (44) Bubulcus ibis (Linnaeus, 1758) W x x xo x x x x
7 Indian Pond-Heron (42-42a) Ardeola grayii (Sykes, 1832) W x x xo x x x x
8 Little Green Heron or Little Heron (38-41) Butorides striatus (Linnaeus, 1758) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
9 Black-crowned Night-Heron (52) Nycticorax nycticorax (Linnaeus, 1758) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
4 Storks Ciconiidae                
10 Painted Stork (60) Mycteria leucocephala (Pennant, 1769) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
11 Asian Openbill-Stork or Asian Openbill (61) Anastomus oscitans (Boddaert, 1783) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
5 Ibises and Spoonbills Threskiornithidae                
12 Glossy Ibis (71) Plegadis falcinellus (Linnaeus, 1766) W x x xo x 0 0 0
13 Oriental White Ibis or Black-headed Ibis (69) Threskiornis melanocephalus (Latham, 1790) W x x 0 x 0 0 0
14 Black Ibis (70) Pseudibis papillosa (Temminck, 1824) W x x xo x 0 0 0
6 Geese and Ducks Anatidae                
15 Lesser Whistling-Duck (88) Dendrocygna javanica (Horsfield, 1821) W x x 0 x 0 0 0
16 Brahminy Shelduck or Ruddy Shelduck (90) Tadorna ferruginea (Pallas, 1764) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
17 Comb Duck (115) Sarkidiornis melanotos (Pennant, 1769) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
18 Northern Shoveller (105) Anas clypeata Linnaeus, 1758 W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
7 Hawks, Eagles, Buzzards, Old World Vultures, Kites, Harriers Accipitridae                
19 Black-shouldered Kite (124 Elanus caeruleus (Desfontaines, 1789) T x x xo x x x x
20 Black Kite (132-134) Milvus migrans (Boddaert, 1783) T x x xo x x x x
21 Brahminy Kite (135) Haliastur indus (Boddaert, 1783) WD x 0 0 x 0 0 0
22 Egyptian Vulture (186-187) Neophron percnopterus (Linnaeus, 1758) T x 0 xo x 0 0 0
23 Indian White-backed Vulture or White-rumped Vulture (185) Gyps bengalensis (Gmelin, 1788) T xo 0 0 xo 0 0 0
24 Long-billed Vulture (182) Gyps indicus (Scopoli, 1786) T xo 0 0 xo 0 0 0
25 Red-headed Vulture (178) Sarcogyps calvus (Scopoli, 1786) T xo 0 0 xo 0 0 0
26 Western Marsh-Harrier or Eurasian Marsh Harrier (193) Circus aeruginosus (Linnaeus, 1758) WD x 0 0 x 0 0 0
27 Shikra (137-140) Accipiter badius (Gmelin, 1788) T x x xo x x x x
28 Steppe Eagle (169) Aquila nipalensis Hodgson, 1833 WD 0 0 0 x 0 0 0
29 Eastern Imperial Eagle (167) Aquila heliaca Savigny, 1809 WD 0 0 0 x 0 0 0
8 Osprey Pandionidae                
30 Osprey (203) Pandion haliaetus (Linnaeus, 1758) WD 0 0 0 x 0 0 0
9 Falcons Falconidae                
31 Lesser Kestrel (221) Falco naumanni Fleischer, 1818 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
32 Common Kestrel (222-224) Falco tinnunculus Linnaeus, 1758 T 0 0 xo x 0 0 0
33 Red-headed Falcon or Red-necked Falcon (219) Falco chicquera Daudin, 1800 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
34 Laggar or Laggar Falcon (208) Falco jugger J.E. Gray, 1834 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
35 Peregrine Falcon (209-211) Falco peregrinus Tunstall, 1771 WD x 0 0 0 0 0 0
10 Pheasants, Partridges, Quails Phasianidae                
36 Grey Francolin (244-246) Francolinus pondicerianus (Gmelin, 1789) T x 0 xo x 0 0 0
37 Rain Quail (252) Coturnix coromandelica (Gmelin, 1789) T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
38 Jungle Bush-Quail (255-258) Perdicula asiatica (Latham, 1790) T 0 0 xo x 0 0 0
39 Rock Bush-Quail (259-261) Perdicula argoondah (Sykes, 1832) T 0 0 xo x 0 0 0
40 Grey Junglefowl (301) Gallus sonneratii Temminck, 1813 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
41 Indian Peafowl (311) Pavo cristatus Linnaeus, 1758 T x x xo x x x x
11 Rails, Crakes, Moorhens, Coots Rallidae                
42 White-breasted Waterhen (343-345) Amaurornis phoenicurus (Pennant, 1769) W x x xo x 0 0 x
43 Purple Moorhen or Purple Swamphen (348-349) Porphyrio porphyrio (Linnaeus, 1758) W x x xo x 0 0 x
44 Common Moorhen (347-347a) Gallinula chloropus (Linnaeus, 1758) W x x xo x 0 0 x
45 Common Coot (350) Fulica atra Linnaeus, 1758 W x x xo x 0 0 x
12 Jacanas Jacanidae                
46 Pheasant-tailed Jacana (358) Hydrophasianus chirurgus (Scopoli, 1786) W x x xo x 0 0 0
47 Bronze-winged Jacana (359) Metopidius indicus (Latham, 1790) W x x xo x 0 0 0
13 Painted-Snipes Rostratulidae                
48 Greater Painted-Snipe (429) Rostratula benghalensis (Linnaeus, 1758) W x 0 xo x 0 0 0
14 Plovers, Lapwings Charadriidae                
49 Little Ringed Plover (379-380) Charadrius dubius Scopoli, 1786 W x x xo x 0 0 0
50 Red-wattled Lapwing (366-368) Vanellus indicus (Boddaert, 1783) W x x xo x x x x
15 Sandpipers, Stints, Snipes, Godwits and Curlews Scolopacidae                
51 Common Snipe (409) Gallinago gallinago (Linnaeus, 1758) W 0 0 0 x 0 0 0
52 Black-tailed Godwit (389-390) Limosa limosa (Linnaeus, 1758) W x x 0 x 0 0 0
53 Common Redshank (393, 394) Tringa totanus (Linnaeus, 1758) W x x 0 x 0 0 0
54 Wood Sandpiper (398) Tringa glareola Linnaeus, 1758 W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
55 Common Sandpiper (401) Actitis hypoleucos Linnaeus, 1758 W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
56 Little Stint (416) Calidris minuta (Leisler, 1812) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
57 Ruff (426) Philomachus pugnax (Linnaeus, 1758) W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
16 Avocets and Stilts Recurvirostridae                
58 Black-winged Stilt (430-431) Himantopus himantopus (Linnaeus, 1758) W x 0 0 x 0 0 x
17 Stone-Curlew and Stone-Plovers/Thick-knees Burhinidae                
59 Stone-Curlew or Eurasian Thick-knee (435-436) Burhinus oedicnemus (Linnaeus, 1758) T x 0 0 x 0 0 0
60 Great Stone-Plover or Great Thick-knee (437) Esacus recurvirostris (Cuvier, 1829) W 0 0 0 x 0 0 0
18 Gulls, Terns Laridae                
61 River Tern (463) Sterna aurantia J.E. Gray, 1831 W x 0 0 x 0 0 0
19 Pigeons and Doves Columbidae                
62 Blue Rock Pigeon (516-517) Columba livia Gmelin, 1789 T x x xo x x x 0
63 Little Brown Dove or Laughing Dove (541) Streptopelia senegalensis (Linnaeus, 1766) T x x xo x x x 0
64 Red Collared-Dove (535-536) Streptopelia tranquebarica (Hermann, 1804) T x x xo x x x 0
65 Eurasian Collared-Dove (534) Streptopelia decaocto (Frivaldszky, 1838) T x x xo x x x 0
20 Parakeets Psittacidae                
66 Rose-ringed Parakeet (549-550) Psittacula krameri (Scopoli, 1769) T x x xo x 0 0 0
21 Cuckoos, Malkohas and Coucals Cuculidae                
67 Greater Coucal (600-602) Centropus sinensis (Stephens, 1815) T x x xo x 0 0 0
22 Owls Strigidae                
68 Spotted Owlet (650-652) Athene brama (Temminck, 1821) T 0 0 xo x 0 0 0
23 Kingfishers Alcedinidae                
69 Small Blue Kingfisher or Common Kingfisher (722-724) Alcedo atthis (Linnaeus, 1758) WD x 0 0 x 0 0 0
70 White-breasted Kingfisher or  White-throated Kingfisher (735-738) Halcyon smyrnensis (Linnaeus, 1758) WD x x xo x x x x
24 Bee-eaters Meropidae                
71 Small Bee-eater (749-752) Merops orientalis Latham, 1801 T x x xo x x x 0
25 Rollers Coraciidae                
72 Indian Roller (755-757) Coracias benghalensis (Linnaeus, 1758) T x 0 xo x 0 0 0
26 Hoopoes Upupidae                
73 Common Hoopoe (763-766) Upupa epops Linnaeus, 1758 T x x xo x 0 0 0
27 Swallows and Martins Hirundinidae                
74 Dusky Crag-Martin (914) Hirundo concolor Sykes, 1833 T x 0 xo x 0 0 0
75 Wire-tailed Swallow (921) Hirundo smithii Leach, 1818 WD x x xo x 0 0 0
76 Red-rumped Swallow (923-928) Hirundo daurica Linnaeus, 1771 WD x 0 xo x 0 0 0
28 Wagtails and Pipits Motacillidae                
77 White Wagtail (1885-1890) Motacilla alba Linnaeus, 1758 WD x 0 xo x 0 0 0
78 Large Pied Wagtail or White-browed Wagtail (1891) Motacilla maderaspatensis Gmelin, 1789 WD x x xo x 0 0 0
79 Grey Wagtail (1884) Motacilla cinerea Tunstall, 1771 WD x 0 xo x 0 0 0
29 Bulbuls Pycnonotidae                
80 White-eared Bulbul (1123-1124) Pycnonotus leucotis (Gould, 1836) T 0 x 0 0 0 0 0
81 Red-vented Bulbul (1126-1132) Pycnonotus cafer (Linnaeus, 1766) T x x xo x x x 0
30 Shrikes Laniidae                
82 Rufous-tailed Shrike (942-943) Lanius isabellinus Hemprich and Ehrenberg, 1833 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
83 Brown Shrike (949-950a) Lanius cristatus Linnaeus, 1758 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
84 Bay-backed Shrike (939-940) Lanius vittatus Valenciennes, 1826 T 0 0 xo x 0 0 0
85 Rufous-backed Shrike or Long-tailed Shrike (946-948) Lanius schach Linnaeus, 1758 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
86 Southern Grey Shrike (933-935) Lanius meridionalis Temminck, 1820 T 0 0 xo x 0 0 0
31 Thrushes, Robins, Wheaters Turdinae                
87 Oriental Magpie-Robin (1661-1664) Copsychus saularis (Linnaeus, 1758) T x x xo x 0 0 0
88 Indian Robin (1717-1721) Saxicoloides fulicata (Linnaeus, 1776) T x x xo x x x 0
89 Black Redstart (1671-1672) Phoenicurus ochruros (Gmelin, 1774) T x 0 xo x 0 0 0
90 Indian Chat (1692) Cercomela fusca (Blyth, 1851) T x x xo x x x 0
32 Babblers Timaliinae                
91 Rufous-bellied Babbler or Tawny-bellied Babbler (1219-1223) Dumetia hyperythra (Franklin, 1831) T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
92 Large Grey Babbler (1258) Turdoides malcolmi (Sykes, 1832) T x 0 xo x 0 0 0
93 Jungle Babbler (1261-1265) Turdoides striatus (Dumont, 1823) T x 0 xo x 0 0 0
33 Munias (Estrildid Finches) Estrildidae                
94 White-throated Munia or Indian Silverbill (1966) Lonchura malabarica (Linnaeus, 1758) T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
34 Sparrows Passerinae                
95 House Sparrow (1938-1939a) Passer domesticus (Linnaeus, 1758) T x x xo x 0 x 0
96 Yellow-throated Sparrow or Chestnut-shouldered Petronia (1948-1949) Petronia xanthocollis (Burton, 1838) T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
35 Starlings and Mynas Sturnidae                
97 Brahminy Starling (994) Sturnus pagodarum (Gmelin, 1789) T 0 0 0 x 0 0 0
98 Asian Pied Starling (1002-1004) Sturnus contra Linnaeus, 1758 T x x xo x x x 0
99 Common Myna (1006-1007) Acridotheres tristis (Linnaeus, 1766) T x x xo x x x 0
100 Bank Myna (1008) Acridotheres ginginianus (Latham, 1790) T x x xo x x x 0
36 Drongos Dicruridae                
101 Black Drongo (962-964) Dicrurus macrocercus Vieillot, 1817 T x x xo x 0 0 0
37 Crows, Treepies Corvidae                
102 House Crow (1048-1051) Corvus splendens Vieillot, 1817 T x x xo x x x 0
103 Jungle Crow or Large-billed Crow (1054-1057) Corvus macrorhynchos Wagler, 1827 T 0 0 xo 0 0 0 0
  TOTAL     78 45 70 89 22 23 17

Table 2: Checklist of species as per the urban areas.

Sr. No. Orders Family Number of Species
Terrestrial Wetland Wetland Dependent No. of Species in Study Area
1 Galliformes Phasianidae 6 0 0 6
2 Anseriformes Anatidae 0 4 0 4
3 Upupiformes Upupidae 1 0 0 1
4 Coraciiformes Alcedinidae
2 0 2 4
5 Cuculiformes Cuculidae 1 0 0 1
6 Strigiformes Strigidae 1 0 0 1
7 Columbiformes Columbidae 4 0 0 4
8 Psittaciformes Psittacidae 1 0 0 1
9 Gruiformes Raliidae 0 4 0 4
10 Ciconiiformes Podicipedidae
12 29 6 47
11 Passeriformes Hirundinidae
Pycnonotidae Laniidae
Estrilidae Passerinae Sturnidae
25 0 5 30
  10 Orders 37 Families 53 37 13 103

Table 3: Order, family and species as per the habitats.

Species richness and habitat

The investigated area has diversity of the habitat. Broadly bird species were categorized on the basis of the use of two major habitats, namely terrestrial and aquatic (Table 3). Of the total 103 species, 53 were terrestrial species, 37 wetland species and 13 wetland dependent species.

Globally important species

As according to the IUCN Red List, three vulture species, namely Indian White-backed Vulture (Gyps bengalensis), Long-billed Vulture (G. indicus) and Red-headed Vulture (Sarcogyps calvus) are the Critically Endangered species, so as the records from the investigation sites. None of the three were sited during the recent year of observations but had the past records from two areas of Udaipur and Bharatpur (Figure 1).

As per the second category of threat i.e., Endangered, two species viz. Egyptian Vulture (Neophron percnopterus) and Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) were recorded from sites of dumping sites of Bharatpur (Near NH 11 adjoining Keoladeo National Park)) and Udaipur (Baleecha). Eastern Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) enlisted in vulnerable category of threatened species were recorded from site of Udaipur (Baleecha). Seven NT (Near Threatened) species, Painted Stork (Mycteria leucocephala), Black-headed Ibis (Threskiornis melanocephalus), Great Thick Knee (Esacus recurvirostris), Black-tailed Godwit (Limosa lapponica), River Tern (Sterna aurantia), Red-headed Falcon (Falco chicquera), Laggar Falcon (F. jugger) were enlisted in the Table 2. Out of these five species were recorded from different sites in the investigation period whereas two (Falco sp.) were past records. Thus, dumping (solid and liquid wastes) sites of Udaipur (Baleecha and Ahar Nallah) harbored eight species of global interest whereas sites of Bharatpur were visited by four near threatened species.

Activities and behavior

The dumping ground was he site with a great variety of food giving space to several micro and macro fauna and flora. These resulted into the food for the bird species. The most common activity observed for the birds was feeding. In raptors, the common feature was single presence except when the animal carcass was part of disposal wastes. The egrets and passerine species were mostly observed in groups. Same was the case with the aquatic species, which were observed in small flocks with different numbers depending on the area of the sewage or effluent waste water collection sites. The stretches in form of nallah used to had flocks of waders due to its shallow nature. The waterhen species (white-breasted waterhens, swamphens and moorhens) were the species found nesting within or near the waste water sites. Egrets and passerine birds were found nesting only when there was enough vegetation around waste dumping sites. The stretches of Ahar nallah were the observed sites for nesting along with those at Bharatpur. Thus, it was concluded that in presence of the natural resources and habitats, these human modified habitats could be one of the places attracting birds and could be used for birding.


The avifaunal species richness is directly or indirectly affected by the environmental characteristics especially in the areas with the high rate of anthropogenic activities [14]. Surman [15] listed several factors of disturbances reflecting ecological and behavioral characteristics in birds. It is important to assess the micro habitats available to birds at a smaller spatial scale. As per the studies of Anon [16] anthropogenic factors are among the critically important factors in mapping the microhabitat site in terms of avifaunal sensitivity and ultimately informing the mitigation requirements. In the present investigation, it was observed that the study area harbors ninety percent of the avifauna in their habitats [1,2,8,17,18]. The species richness was greatly affected in the sites of disturbances [1,2,8,17,18]. The waste disposal sites (both solid and liquid) are exclusively observed under the present investigation. Tuljapurkar and Bhagwat [10] observed that the concentration of garbage at one place by civic authorities in towns and mega cities provides an ample supply of food to diverse species including birds. As expected the number of species was not up to the higher side as compared to the other sites low disturbances. Despite of the fact that the conditions were not favorable for the birds, the waste sites harbored substantial number of species. Since the present investigation was a short period investigation of a year and need long-term monitoring to recommend the sites as a useful resource for avifauna but it observed that the species which are resistant enough to the deteriorating environment use these sites for their life cycle processes. The life cycle processes are mainly food in terms of organic wastes [19,20]. This showed that the sites were not the primary choice of the observed species. If they get the better option, they might shift. Due to limited studies, such interpretations need justifiable study time period to conclude (Supplementyary Figures 1-3).


The dumping sites were mostly considered to be useful for a certain professionals of the community dealing with waste as wealth. But these sites could be of great utility for the raptorial species “Vulture Cafeteria” of global interest. The only need is to check and balance. The animal wastes and the biodegradable wastes could be used as a food resource for different species. Further, with the development of green belt around the dumping sites, one could attract the diversity of birds. Thus, these sites could be of great revenue generation for the local municipal bodies.


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