Kerala village that cherishes biodiversity names road after an iconic bird found there

Kidoor village in Kasaragod has named a road after the orange-breasted green pigeon.
Kerala village that cherishes biodiversity names road after an iconic bird found there
Kerala village that cherishes biodiversity names road after an iconic bird found there
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"Many panchayats give importance to infrastructure development,” begins Raju Kidoor, “but we consider biodiversity conservation equally important. We humans cannot exist alone in this world without other living beings," says the school teacher, and member of the Kidoor’s biodiversity managing committee.

Kidoor, a village near Kumbla in Kerala’s Kasaragod district is indeed setting an example when it comes to cherishing its biodiversity.

Latest in its conservation activities is naming a road in the village after a bird – an orange-breasted green pigeon called Manjavariyan Pravu in Malayalam – which was first spotted in Kidoor in 2016. Kumbla grama panchayat – in which Kidoor falls – has named the road from Kuntangeradka to Bejappe after the bird.

The two-kilometre stretch of the road will be known as 'Manjavariyan Road’ in Malayalam, 'Kesary Kuttigeya Hasiru Paarivaala' in Kannada and Orange-Breasted Green Pigeon in English. All the three names are written on the board placed near the road of this village which at near the Kerala-Karnataka border. Balakrishnan, Member Secretary of Kerala State Biodiversity Board named the road in the last week of November during the 2019 Kidoor Bird Fest. 

The Manjavariyan Pravu was spotted by a group of bird watchers during a bird watching program in 2016. Since then, people have been frequently recognising them in the village. 

"This bird is a forest species, and we were surprised to spot it in a laterite stone area in our village. After 2016, it was spotted very frequently in this particular road. For the last four years, our village has been attracting bird watchers from different places. We have been conducting the Kidoor Bird Fest every year," says Raju. He adds that it is common in a few foreign countries to name place or road after birds.

The orange-breasted green pigeon is a resident bird seen in few Asian countries including Burma and Thailand. These green coloured pigeons feed on wild fruits, berries, figs and other fruits. The male birds have an orange patch on the lower breast. Female birds have a greenish-yellow belly and yellowish breast.

"It is iconic bird of our small village. We give importance to biodiversity at our panchayat. We see roads being named after great people. But here this village is known for its bird species, so we decided to name it after the bird," Raju says.

He observes that Kidoor is a village that consist of areas with rocky terrain, as well as forest patches, paddy fields and a river, which makes it a perfect habitat for many species of birds -- around 156 species of birds have been identified in the village.

Kumbala panchayat’s biodiversity managing committee has been quite active since 2015, and has been conducting programs for bird conservation. "We have protected a pond in our village so that birds have a source of drinking water. We are also involving school students, youngsters in conservation programs, thus preparing for the future," Raju shares. Bird watching programs in the village also quite popular in Kidoor.

Also read: These bird lovers in Kerala are spreading the message of conservation

In 2018, the village had conducted a moth observing program. "Around 15 nature lovers had gathered on July 20 and tied a white cloth near LED bulbs to observe different moths in the area. The program was conducted to spread awareness on conserving moths," Raju says.


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