Swelling lake leaves migratory birds hungry in China

Beijing, Feb 3 (IANS) Migratory birds wintering in China’s largest freshwater lake are facing starvation as the lake has nearly tripled in size due to winter storms and inundated birds’ habitats.

A member of Poyang Lake nature reserve staff said the rising water has inundated some migratory birds’ habitats and they have been forced to disperse to shoals to seek food.

Poyang Lake is Asia’s largest wintering habitat for migratory birds. Every year, hundreds of thousands of birds winter here, including over 95 percent of the world’s white cranes, 50 percent of white-naped cranes and 60 percent of swan geese.

As of 8 a.m. on Wednesday, the water level of Poyang lake in China’s Jiangxi province was 12.31 metres at the Xingzi hydrological station, compared to the average 9.21 meters the same time in previous years, Xinhua cited provincial hydrology bureau as saying.

The lake’s water level is still rising and its surface area is three times of that at the same time last year, according to the bureau.

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