National Bird Day and its significance
Image Source: http://www.avianwelfare.org/
National Bird Day is observed every year on 5 January. It is observed to raise awareness about birds’ captivity. Millions of birds are captured from the wild or kept in captivity for commercial gain or human amusement every year. They are also kept in conditions that do not meet their instinctive behavioural and physical needs.
National Bird Day is observed every year on 5 January in United States. There are different dates for this holiday in different countries. There are other days with the same theme too. International Migratory Bird Day is a conservation initiative that brings awareness on conserving migratory birds and their habitats throughout the Western Hemisphere. The program promotes conservation and environmental education in Canada, the United States, Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. Originated by the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, Environment for the Americas now coordinate it. Every year, it falls on the second Saturday in May in the U.S. and Canada, and on the second Saturday in October in Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean.
On a similar theme, World Sparrow Day is celebrated annually on 20 March every year. It is aimed at raising awareness and protecting common house sparrows, which are not so commonly seen now due to increasing noise pollution. Salim Ali was an Indian ornithologist and naturalist, also known as “Birdman of India”.
Theme of National Bird Day
The National Bird Day is observed to raise awareness about bird’s captivity. The theme is on similar line. The theme of National Bird Day 2019 was “Protect Birds: Be the Solution to Plastic Pollution”. The Avian Welfare Coalition’s National Bird Day campaign aims to reduce the suffering of birds by raising public awareness of the destructive bird trade, the realities of cruel bird breeding mills, and ways to improve the welfare of birds already in captivity.
History of National Bird Day
Birds have always held a place of fascination, love, and adoration in our hearts, whether they are your backyard cardinal or the pigeons in your park. You can only get a sense of awe from watching an eagle soar. Sadly, most birds are endangered or protected. It is mostly because of habitat loss or illegal pet trade.
That is why the Avian Welfare Coalition created National Bird Day: to raise awareness of the hardships and plights of these vulnerable animals and how we can initiate the change needed to create a healthier, more sustainable relationship with them.
Birds are often seen as living links to the past because they are the closest relatives to dinosaurs. Often, they are keystone species in ecosystems, a sign of the health of the ecosystem. Woodpecker holes, for instance, are commonly used as homes by a variety of animals. Therefore, if woodpeckers ran out of food – or of the right kinds of trees – all the animals who depend on them would, too.
National Bird Day may be new, having been founded in 2002, but the challenges birds face is not anything new. Dodos, Labrador ducks, and Passenger Pigeons are living proof. Birds like these were considered sacred by many Native American tribes and were often the subject of American art until they died out.
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