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Barmer Villagers Make Birdbath From Oil Tin Can, Inspire Hundreds to Do the Same!

Barmer Villagers Make Birdbath From Oil Tin Can, Inspire Hundreds to Do the Same!

Villagers of Barmer, Rajasthan, came up with an indigenous birdbath and feeder to protect birds from the heatwave.

In the last week of May, several parts of India, including Rajasthan, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra experienced severe to very severe heatwave conditions, which pushed day temperatures significantly above normal. Delhi recorded a high of 47 degrees, while the temperature in Churu, Rajasthan, touched 50 degrees.

Churu was not the only city affected in the state. Most cities recorded temperatures up to 45-degree Celsius, which exacerbated the water shortage crisis. For example, in Barmer, the groundwater levels would sink during the day because of the scorching heat, leading to an acute shortage of drinking water for the villagers.

Soon they realised that they were not alone in their suffering—birds and livestock too had no access to water.

To share the little they had, locals started to make birdbaths and feeders from recycled tin cans.They were made by cutting open four sides of the can using a heated knife or hand grinder. This created an opening for the birds and a shallow well in the middle for water.

The baths were hung under trees to prevent them from heating up as the day got warmer.

When Parveen Kaswan, Indian Forest Service officer, received an image of this indigenous bird feeder, he immediately shared it on his social media accounts. In his tweet, he appealed to people to do their part for small birds by keeping some water.

“It was started as a noble cause to protect birds in their respective area. Using a basic item that is available in everyone’s homes, this indigenous solution has saved birds in that region from the harsh summer,” says Praveen in an interview with The Better India.

How A Tweet Inspired People Across India To Make Birdbaths

Kaswan did not anticipate that his viral tweet could inspire so many others to follow suit. “It was heartwarming to see people across different states sharing with their own version of the birdbaths,” says Parveen.

Swaraj Vishwakumar, a mechanical engineer based in Raipur, Chhattisgarh, was among the many who were inspired by this tweet, and decided to make his own.

“I used an empty oil tin in my house, some wire, and a hand grinder to cut the metal. Within half an hour, it was done and I kept it on my roof. But, birds did not show up until I placed it on a tree near my house. Now, 5 to 6 birds feed on it every day, ” he says.

But it was not just Swaraj who was inspired by the picture from Barmer.

Parveen says after his tweet was published in Rajasthan Patrika, a group of shopkeepers and their workers in Bikaner, stepped up to make 500 such birdbaths. They were placed outside temples and distributed free of cost to whoever was interested.

Vishal Wadkar, a resident of Pune, is also among the many who were inspired by the tweet.

“Every morning I hear the symphony of chirping birds, but I had never wondered about where they would find water to drink, especially in the city. That post by Kaswan sir got me thinking and I immediately decided to make a birdbath. I used an old oil tin can, and a knife to cut the metal. I ensured there were no sharp edges and within four hours, it was done. Apart from that, I added some guppy fish in the bird bath to keep mosquitoes from breeding in stagnant water,” he says.

Social media has made an impact not only on the lives of human beings but also animals. Here are some other bird baths that people made after seeing the tweet:

(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)

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