Thane: NGOs to educate citizens to stop feeding junk food to Seagulls

NGOs from Thane have come together to conduct a campaign to save seagulls on Sunday. According to experts, this species that naturally opts for seafood as its diet, is often spotted consuming food littered by people.

The campaign is scheduled to take place on Sunday at Masunda lake in Thane with an aim to educate bird lovers who feed random junk food items to these birds, which can risk their health and lead to various diseases.

"Seagulls are often spotted near creeks and other water bodies to feed on their natural diet like fish. They then migrate to the northern side of the country towards places like Ladakh and Himalayan to breed," said Rohit Joshi, environmentalist and founder of Yeoor Environmental Society, Thane.

"However, these birds are often being fed junk food by humans, which is not a proper nutritional diet. Hence, due to such poor quality of food or artificial diet, they could face long term health issues. It could risk their survival in the future," added Joshi.

According to experts, feeding junk foods leads to serious health issues, which could lead to various diseases within these species and can be easily transmitted to other species of birds, as Seagulls migrate in a community.

Around 10 to 12 NGOs from Thane will be a part of this campaign to highlight this issue amongst the citizens. "Besides the risk to their health, humans placing junk food items on the streets or throwing them into water bodies to attract these birds has made them used to such poor quality of diet. It has also contaminated the water bodies and streets," said Aditya Patil, founder of Wildlife Welfare Association, Thane.

The main aim of the campaign is to educate the humans and bird lovers about disadvantages and harm they cause to birds. “We should leave them to get fed with their natural diet for their safe and healthy survival in the future," said another volunteer from Paryavaran Daksha Mandal, an NGO from Thane. The campaign will be held near Masunda lake, on Sunday between 7 am to 9 am, by a specific number of volunteers from various NGOs, considering the pandemic.

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