Pune: Is Feeding Wildlife Helping or Hurting? Forest Department Warns Against Wildlife Feeding by 'Bird Influencers'

Pune: Is Feeding Wildlife Helping or Hurting? Forest Department Warns Against Wildlife Feeding by 'Bird Influencers'

The Pune Forest division has taken decisive action and tightened the grip against individuals engaged in activities such as feeding and handling wildlife, including birds, at their residences and sharing the videos and photos on social media platforms.

Ankit ShuklaUpdated: Friday, July 05, 2024, 05:54 PM IST
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Pune: Is Feeding Wildlife Helping or Hurting? Forest Department Warns Against Wildlife Feeding by 'Bird Influencers' |

Are you someone who feeds wild birds and animals, and shares it on social media, believing you're helping wildlife? If so, you may want to reconsider. The Pune Forest Department has explicitly prohibited feeding wildlife due to potential threats it poses to their safety and natural behaviors.

The Pune Forest division has taken decisive action and tightened the grip against individuals engaged in activities such as feeding and handling wildlife, including birds, at their residences and sharing the videos and photos on social media platforms.

Bird under threat

Birds and animals like Alexandrine Parakeets, Common Mynas, Crows, Red-Whiskered Bulbuls, Squirrels, Pigeons, Parrots, and Monkeys are strictly prohibited from being fed at residential apartments under the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972.

Is Feeding Wildlife Helping or Hurting?

The decision has been taken to maintain the natural feeding system among these species. The natural order of feeding is being disturbed and displaced by such activities in residential areas. These species are becoming addicted and losing their natural style of finding food and water. Such activities could create trouble for these animals and birds in the future.

Speaking to the Free Press Journal, Aditya Paranjape, Wildlife Warden of Pune District, expressed, "It has been a trend among citizens to feed birds and wild animals. We have been consistently spreading awareness for the last three months to stop such activities. These actions are an indirect violation of the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972, specifically under sections related to baiting and hunting of animals, which are punishable offenses that could result in three years of imprisonment, a fine of up to ₹1 lakh, or both."

"Some individuals on social media have attempted to depict themselves as wildlife saviors through various news channels, falsely associating such actions with compassion. However, not only are these activities illegal, but they also foster a dangerous dependence of wildlife on humans, which could have grave consequences in the future," he added.

Serve water but don't feed food: Forest Dept

"In the summer seasons, serving water is fine, but feeding them food is prohibited. From Saturday onwards, we will start taking action against a few social media platforms that have been warned but still post photographs and videos of handling and feeding wildlife on the internet," he further said.

"We will also urge media persons to refrain from promoting such unlawful behavior and to help disseminate this message within their communities to ensure awareness about the legal implications of these actions," he appealed.

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