As an increase in the number of malls and apartments has resulted in limited space for building nests, house sparrows have begun to fly away from the city.
Speaking at a conference on house sparrows at St Joseph’s Arts and Science College, Dr Rajshekhar, who has studied sparrows in the city, said: “Sparrows survive in areas where there are enough food sources like markets and old buildings with slope roofs or tiles or shades as well as in cool places which are not very high. As the city has started expanding, sparrows have lost their habitat and have moved to outskirts and villages.”
Though urbanisation has not affected sparrows in cities like Mumbai, it has clearly made an impact on them in Bangalore. “We did not keep statistics of sparrows as we did not expect an exponential decline in their number,” TV Ramachandra from Centre for Sustainable Technologies, Indian Institute of Science, said.
“Sparrows are known to live close to human habitats. Earlier, people used to throw grains of rice or cow peas which have a lot of protein; this attracted sparrows. Now, nobody does it. The city has become a concrete jungle with barely any space for sparrows,” he said.
“They like to live in areas not more than six meters. With high-rise apartments mushrooming, such areas are limited. Also, high rise buildings have glass surfaces which are not conducive for the sparrows’ survival. The temperature in the city too has increased, leading to the decline in their population,” he concluded.