A winter roost count of the Short-eared Owl Asio flammeus (Aves: Strigiformes: Strigidae) at Porbandar, Gujarat, India

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Dhavalkumar Vargiya
Anita Chakraborty


The Short-eared Owl Asio flammeus is a common to uncommon winter visitor to Gujarat.  The species roosted in bushes of Prosopis juliflora in the grassland of Shiroda area, Odadar Village of Porbandar District.  Communal roosts were identified by foot surveys between 9–17 November 2016.  A total of 20 individuals co-existed with grazing cattle in the grassland of ca. 1km2.  At present due to their restricted nesting habits and nomadic nature, the species is vulnerable to habitat loss at their feeding and roosting grounds.  Conversion of open habitats to agriculture, grazing, recreation, housing and tourism development are the current threats to the species in the wetland complex.  The IUCN conservation status further confirms that though they are assessed as Least Concern, in spite of the species population constantly declining with global population estimated at 3,000,000 individuals which equates to 2,000,000 mature individuals.  The present study is the first systematic attempt to count a roost in Gujarat.

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Author Biographies

Dhavalkumar Vargiya, School of Pharmacy, RK University, Rajkot-Bhavnagar Highway, Kasturbadham, Rajkot, Gujarat 360020, India

PhD Scholar, RK University, Gujarat

Anita Chakraborty, Department of Botany, SSLNT Mahila Mahavidlaya, Luby Circular Road, Dhanbad, Jharkhand 826001, India

Senior Technical Officer, Centre for Environmental Management and Participatory,

Development, Kolkata-700106


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