‘Naga’, ‘Pangti’, ‘Wokha’ on safe course
Dimapur, November 17
Nagaland has a reason to cheer.
The satellite tagged Amur Falcons (falco amurensis) namely ‘Naga’, ‘Pangti’ and ‘Wokha’ have left the Indian sub-continent and continue to emit signals on their migratory flight to the African continent. Of the three birds, satellite tagged in Nagaland on November 7, Naga and Pangti, have completed the most difficult stretch of their flight over the Arabian Sea and have reached the African continent. The live tracker indicates that the birds left the west coast of India on November 13 and reached Somalia on November 16, flying four days non-stop while covering a distance of over 4000kms.
Satellite images show Naga and Pangti to be now in Somalia.
The bird Wokha which was lagging behind and tracked over the Bay of Bengal on Thursday last has also begun its long flight across the Arabian Sea.
On November 7, Naga, a male Falcon took the route of Wokha, Assam, Bangladesh, the Bay of Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka before entering the airspace over the Arabian Sea.
During the same period, Pangti, a female, took the route of Wokha, Assam, Bangladesh, West Bengal, the Bay of Bengal, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra before beginning the journey over the Arabian Sea.
Wokha, also a female, followed Pangti’s path and was tracked flying over the Bay of Bengal way behind the other two.
The movements of all three birds are being monitored by scientists in Hungary, filtering satellite data through a dedicated website.
Every year, from October to November, a large number of Amur Falcons arrive in the Northeast, especially in Nagaland for roosting, from Southeastern Siberia and northern China en route to their final destinations — Somalia, Kenya and South Africa. Amur Falcons travel up to 22,000 km a year — one of the longest distances of migration.
This is the first time Amur Falcons in Nagaland were satellite-tagged and their movements to South Africa are being monitored.
The tagging was a joint mission undertaken at Pangti village in Wokha district by two leading scientists from MME/BirdLife Hungary, Peter Fehervani and Szabolcs Soil; Nick Williams, Programme Officer — Birds of Prey (Raptors), Convention on Migratory Species Office Abu Dhabi, United Nations Environment Programme; R. Suresh, a scientist from the Wildlife Institute of India, and the Nagaland Forest Department.
Pangti villagers particularly from the fishermen community who hunted the birds in the thousands, last October, helped the scientists in trapping the falcons and fitting the satellite tags this year, in a conservation drive that has begun in right earnest in the area