The Kerala Forest Department is embarking on a unique project to utilise the magic of bird melodies for conservation.
An event to be hosted by the department here on September 18 will provide a venue for foresters, researchers, and music composers to highlight the beauty of birdsongs and make them relevant to conservation efforts.
Participants in the programme can make original music using a combination of birdsongs and ‘beatbox’ to create awareness about birds and their conservation. The music will be mixed with high-quality photographs and footage of these birds to create a video, linking birds responsible for the sounds in the composition.
Titled “Give birds something to sing about,” the programme involves the National Centre for Biological Sciences, Bengaluru, with bird ecologist V.V. Robin; scholar-in-residence Ben Mirin from New York; and photographer Prasenjeet Yadav from Bengaluru. While Ben will use beatbox to create music with birdsongs, Prasenjeet will make a video to convey their beauty.
The programme is curated by Aparna U. Banerjee and Sudebi Thakurata.
“It is an attempt to bring back the melodies of Nature,” says Principal Chief Conservator of Forests and Head of Forest Force B.S. Corrie. “While all of us appreciate birds for their unparalleled singing ability, we fail to associate these songs with the unique bird species that live around us.” Dr. Corrie said the programme was expected to give a fresh impetus to tree planting as a means to attract birds.
The special ones
Recent research carried out in Kerala forests indicates that some of the birds endemic to the Western Ghats are very special, especially those that live only on the top of mountain areas called Sky Islands. According to Dr. Corrie, these mountaintop habitats are fast disappearing because of deforestation and climate change, posing a threat to the survival of the birds. The Kerala Forest Department is an active supporter of Sky Island research.Forest Department will provide a venue for foresters, researchers, and music composers to use birdsongs for avian conservation.