From ANIMAL PEOPLE, January/February 2002:
Fears are growing that the combined effects of a multi-year
drought and the war in Afghanistan have severely hurt migratory
birds. None at all came to Rawal Lake, near Islamabad, Pakistan,
wildlife expert Masaud Anwar told BBC reporter Jill McGivering. The
lake usually hosts tens of thousands. World Wildlife Fund
representative Asheik Ahmed Khan said hunters told him that cranes
were seen in flights of no more than three, down from the usual
50-plus. Just 1,500 storks, cranes, egrets, herons, and
cormorants reached the Banganatittu Bird Sanctuary near Mysore,
India, wrote Shankar Bennur of the Deccan Herald, while duck
migrations from Siberia to Jammu-and-Kashmir, in northern India,
were down 90%, said Gharana Wetland wildlife warden Tahir Shawal.
The Islamabad Marghazar Zoo in Pakistan is reportedly to
complete an expansion from 25 acres to 30 by March 31. Included will
be habitat for new species, a kiosk for the World Wildlife Fund,
and a merger with an adjacent Japanese playland.
Bangladesh, India, UNESCO, and the United Nations
Foundation have agreed to collaborate to protect biodiversity in the
Sunderbans mangrove delta which forms the India/Bangladesh frontier,
Sunder-bans Tiger Project India director Pradip Vyas announced on
December 16. Tigers have killed at least 30 people in the Indian
Sunderbans during the past two years. The toll on the Bangladesh
side is unknown.
Lebanon, which reportedly had no animal protection groups
from closure of a French-run humane society in 1943 until 2000, now
has two. In addition to the Animal Friends Without Borders/Animal
Life advocacy and rescue group recently founded by Rosemarie
Jaouhary, DVM, an animal welfare club has been started by Hadia
Harb, dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at the Lebanese
American University, assisted by English literature professor Jason
Miller and actor/singer Sami Khayat, wrote Alexis Baghdadi in the
December 19 Lebanon Daily Star.