GUWAHATI: State bird of Assam – the white winged wood duck is under the threat of extinction due to climate change.

This was claimed in a study conducted by researchers.

In Assam, the white winged wood duck is widely known as Deo Hah.

Apart from climate change other anthropogenic variables may also lead to the extinction of the state bird of Assam.

The study stated that at least 436.61 square kilometers of habitat of the state bird of Assam, may get lost in the next 50 years.

Changes in the annual temperature range will be the important factors to lead to a substantial loss of high potential habitats, the report stated.

Decline in the population of white winged wood duck in Assam has already been observed.

The decline in population of the bird has been attributed mainly to the loss of forest cover, especially near water bodies.

“Tropical forests support the population of the white winged wood duck. It is projected that climate change will have a significant impact on tropical forest ecosystems around the globe. Under the influence of global climate change, a major portion of the natural habitat of the WWWD is likely to be lost by 2050 and 2070,” said the study.

Notably, over half of the global population of white winged wood duck is found in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur.

It was declared an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in 1994.

The white winged wood duck or the Deo Hah was declared as the state bird of Assam in 2003.

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