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CREW pioneered the Bird Watching activity in Bhopal

From CREW archive - 2007

Students target group is always very sensitive to nature conservation issues and bird watching is an important tool to attract young kids and student groups so that they can be sensitized on these issues along with the awareness campaign. Summer vacation is a right period when this activity can be taken up when the specified target group is having some free time with them. Academy campus is very rich in flora and Shahpura Lake in front of the campus makes it a birdwatchers heaven where majority of the arboreal and water birds are available. IIFM campus along with Van Vihar National Park will fill in the gaps of bird watching avenues with dry land scrub birds and rest of the water birds.

The Madhya Pradesh Academy of Administration and Management, Bhopal and Forest Department, Government of Madhya Pradesh are two government organisations that are organising awareness programs to build up general support for nature conservation. These two organisations along with other interested sponsors are planning to organise Bird Watching camps during the summer 2007.

Past Experience

Bhopal Bird Watching Camps were organised by Academy of Administration in the year 2005 in collaboration with World Wide Fund for Nature-India with the support of resource persons, who included well known birders, P.M. Lad, Lalit Shastri, Surendra Tiwari, Pratap Singh and Koustubh Sharma between 11th May 2005 to 12th June 2005.

Three camps were organised wherein around 140 participants were trained in Bird Watching. Lot of enthusiasm was seen during the camps wherein participants aged from 6-60 years were participated in these camps. M.P. Bio-Diversity Board, M.P. Pollution Control Board and EPCO sponsored part of the expenditure of these camps and HT PACE was a media partner.

As an outcome of Bhopal Bird Watching Camps 2005 a group of participants of these camps have started an NGO under the banner 'Bhopal Birds' which in itself speaks the effectiveness of the camps. The camps lead to creation of a small Green Brigade in the form of 'Bhopal Birds'

Date and Time Slot : Initially three camps of six days each will be organised. Tentative time slots for the camps are:

7th to 12th May 2007-- This would be coinciding with World Migratory Bird Day-2007

21st to 26th May 2007, and

28th May to 2nd June 2007

The Award ceremony will be organised on 5th June 2007, coinciding with World Environmental Day.

Batch Size and Age:

Each camp will have a maximum strength of 30-40 students from class 4th to 12th. Three such camps are planned to be organised initially. Even college going students if interested can join the camp. Thus a maximum of 100 students will be trained in Bird Watching in this event. Each camp will be divided into three groups of 10-12 each and will be assigned to a specific resource person. Thus the Student Teacher ratio will be 12:1. Participants of the camp will assemble in the Academy campus by 6 am in the morning during the camp period. Inaugural presentations will be done for 30 minutes on Day-1. On everyday for two hours starting from 6.30 am bird watching camps will be organised in Academy campus, adjoining Shahpura lake, IIFM campus and Van Vihar. Night bird watching will be organised for a minimum of two days between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. near by Kerwa Dam vicinity.

Fee Structure:

Fee for each participant will be Rs.300/-.

Camp benefits :

Bhopal Bird Watching Camps-2007 will result in producing a core group of enlightened "Green Brigade" that will help in Environmental and Biodiversity Conservation of Bhopal. Outcome of Bhopal Bird Watching Camps-2005 amply exemplifies this.

The camp will help in making a checklist of /updating Avian Fauna of Bhopal, which will become a benchmark data base for future record/research.

The Camp will help impart Environmental and Biodiversity Education to the target group. iv. Simultaneously attend to the awareness campaign of Environmental and Biodiversity issues.

The camp will help in creating a "Green Brigade" that will attend to the environmental and biodiversity issues of capital city of Madhya Pradesh as a informal pressure group.

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