The common house sparrows, Passer Domesticus Linnaeus, (chorui/ চড়াই, চড়ুই in Bengali) love to live around humans. Eventually, for ages, they have liked to thrive in perfect camaraderie with city-dwellers. Perhaps, this is the only bird after crows, which are equally common both in urban, sub-urban and rural areas.
This small passerine birds lived happily with humans and, everything seemed hunky dory for them until a few years ago their numbers began to decline alarmingly in the cities. The anthropogenic pressure has hit their existence severely resulting in their extinction from many Indian cities. Not only in India, their numbers have faded almost all over the planet.
Most of the cities look like urban jungles with no place for sparrows. Sparrows prefer to nest and breed in gutters, ledges, wall ventilators, ceilings etc. but modern design and architecture have a different type of construction and, not-so-suitable for the house sparrows. Extensive installation of mobile towers in big cities are also considered as one of the major reasons for the rapid disappearance of sparrows. The emission of electromagnetic rays from mobile towers is detrimental to their survival. Ornithologists have opined, if this continues, sparrows would not take much time to disappear completely. As per ‘Royal Society for Protection of Birds` of Britain, sparrows are enlisted in ‘Red List’ on the basis of their disappearance worldwide.
Since 2010, 20th March is observed as the World Sparrow Day.
Fortunately, a number of sparrows (about 12-15) visit us every morning and, we feed them. These tiny birds demand nothing much, just food grains or small pieces of fruits at times. If you find sparrows near your surrounding, try to feed them and help them thrive.