Is the sociable house sparrow finally making a comeback?

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The friendly bird, whose population has been declining in cities for decades, has found an ally in citizen-led movements across various States About two decades ago, the chirp of house sparrows was a familiar sound in urban neighbourhoods. Over the years, the little bird has vanished from cityscapes due to a lack of nesting sites and food, and a rise in apathy of people. These birds are now getting a helping hand from bird lovers and citizen groups across the country. According to conservationist Mohammed Dilawar, the decline in the population of sparrows began much earlier, but it was not until the early 2000s that the need for its conservation was stressed upon. “About 15 years ago, we realised that we had to start a life-saving project for sparrows if we wanted to hear the chirp again. So we started reaching out to people and authorities to campaign for the bird,” says Dilawar, founder and president of Nature Forever Society (NFS) who has been working relentlessly to save house sparrows. “In the past decade or so, we have been somewhat successful in this mission. The campaign to save the sparrow has grown beyond organisations and become a citizen-based movement […]

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  1. This is wonderful news for south Asia (and the rest of Europe, Asia and North Africa) where the House Sparrow is native, but in North America the house sparrow is a non-native pest that’s contributed to the decline of native bluebirds, among others. The House Sparrow was brought to the U.S. in 1851, and out of a handful of breeding pairs they went on to establish themselves coast to coast, to the detriment of our native fauna. It might be a good idea to distinguish in your runup to the link.

  2. Hi Lisa,
    Thank you for your comment. I agree. The house sparrow, like all introduced species, is definitely a pest in the regions where it has become established, similar to the Starlings introduced in New York’s Central Park. However, this article is about the preservation of the species where it is endemic – in South Asia. I believe the Nature Forever Society is based in Delhi, India.
    – Grant

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