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India: Dozens of pink flamingos were killed in a plane collision

India: Dozens of pink flamingos were killed in a plane collision

A passenger plane killed dozens of pink flamingos on Monday evening as it descended towards Bombay, the financial capital of India, where they landed safely, the press and wildlife activists reported on Tuesday.

At least 36 of these large migratory birds have been killed, according to the daily Hindustan Times, but the number will be much higher, according to estimates by nature advocates.

“The area was full of bird remains,” B N Kumar, of environmental organization NatConnect Foundation, told the Times of India daily.

He added, “Fragments of wings, beaks, and broken legs were scattered over a large area.”

According to Pawan Sharma of the Mumbai-based Resqink Wildlife Welfare Association (RAWW), his organization received a large number of calls on Monday evening warning of dead flamingos falling from the sky.

“This is the first time that such a large number of flamingos have been affected in this way,” Sharma told AFP, adding that it was unusual for this to happen in a single event.

Mumbai Airport recorded more than 600 aircraft collisions with birds between January 2018 and October 2023, according to government statistics.

The wetlands along the Mumbai coast are home to large numbers of flamingos from December onwards where they stay for a few months.

“Resident and migratory birds are threatened by flights passing through these vital habitats, so it is important to take stock of this incident and take moderate measures, so that such unfortunate incidents can be avoided,” Mr. Sharma added.