Spot bellied owls rescued from poachers, tantrics
Article Date: 2011-06-14 Source: http://www.deccanchronicle.com
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India - People's ignorance and superstition is decimating the population of two
species of owls. Spot bellied owls and barn owls are being caught by poachers as
they are in great demand for pooja and black magic rituals. Several of these
birds have been rescued from captivity in the city and in Maredumalli in East
Godavari district. Mr P. Prabhu of the Asian Wildlife Foundation says, ''A spot
bellied eagle owl was found in a remote tribal village near Maredumalli. It was
brought down by the tribal youth. It was rescued and treated.''
Owls are used in black magic and sorcery and are hunted on the outskirts of the
city and in forest areas and traded in the city. Mr Raja Ramana Reddy, the
forest range officer of the anti-poaching squad, said, ''We have rescued barn
owls in the city and outskirts which are used for black magic and to remove bad
omens.'' Wild life experts say that owls play a vital role in the ecosystem and
benefit the crops by preying on rodents and other pests.
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