Rescuers Struggle to Save Birds, Animals Left Injured and Homeless after Cyclone Amphan

Shreya Basak

(Warning: Disturbing images below)

Cyclone Amphan has wreaked havoc in West Bengal, Orissa and neighbouring Bangladesh taking the death toll to atleast 80.

As the states lie devastated, trying hard to cop with the aftermath of the cyclone, it is imperative to take a note of the many birds and animals who have been stranded, killed and rendered homeless due to the felling of innumerable trees and uprooted landscapes.

The National Disaster Relief Fund in its recent statement said that "the rescue of animals, along with humans, during any natural disaster is part of the operations mandate of the NDRF."

“The response teams of NDRF are on the ground. They are working in Cyclone shelters and going to villages in the states to help the people and the animals in the area. The teams are also working to save cattle and livestock and helping on the resettlement of cattle and livestock,” said Director-General, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), S N Pradhan, while addressing a press briefing on Wednesday.

Social media went abuzz with terrifying images that showed the battered condition of the states. Many disturbing images of animals and birds lying dead surfaced too, showing the extent of damage incurred.









HEAL, a Bengal based four-year-old organisation working towards the rescue of the wildlife animals has been receiving approximately three to four calls per day since yesterday morning from all parts of Kolkata and even from other districts. Unfortunately, due to the added Covid-19 lockdown it hasn't been possible for them to cater to every region.

"Birds have been massively affected. This is the breeding season for birds, so to save them has been a massive challenge as hundreds of trees have left them homeless," says Suvrajyoti Chatterjee, Secretary of HEAL.

An organisation of nearly 69 members, HEAL has been taking birds and animals to different wildlife centres to save them.

"We can't even fathom entirely how much the cattle and livestock in the interior have been affected. We have been getting multiple calls from there, but circumstances haven't allowed us to reach there," adds Suvrajyoti.

The helpline numbers of the same have been shared on Facebook:

Meanwhile, since 2008, the World Animal Protection has been working closely with the Government of India to ensure that animals are protected in disasters.

The NDRF states that "In India, animals play an intrinsic role in the lives of the poor and vulnerable communities. Nearly 67% of the poor people own more than 70% of the livestock in the country."