Incredible photos taken recently in Mumbai show thousands of flamingos flocking to a wetland in a residential part of the city, as India remains on lockdown to slow the spread of COVID-19.
While birds typically migrate to the city this time, there has been a noticeable increase in their numbers this year, leading to scenes like the one below.
Per an April report from The Hindustan Times, the birds’ numbers are up are 25% from than last year, which means an estimated 150,000 of them have come to the city.
The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) says that “lower human activity has created ideal conditions for foraging in wetlands”, accounting for the increased flamingo presence.
Deepak Apte of the BNHS said that increased development in Mumbai is forcing birds into smaller and smaller pockets of wetlands.
“The lockdown is giving these birds peace for roosting, no disturbance in their attempt to obtain food, and overall encouraging habitat,” he said.
Local resident Sunil Agarwal told The Hindustan Times that he hopes the sight of wildlife in the area will prompt local residents to think more about conserving the area’s wetlands.
“The lockdown will at least prompt people to focus on what is around them, which they had been taking for granted, and hopefully this site will be declared a flamingo sanctuary soon,” he said.