Alert Mumbaikars! Feeding Pigeons Can Cost You Your Health

Alert Mumbaikars! Feeding Pigeons Can Cost You Your Health

Recently a video of Mumbaikars feeding channa to pigeons on Girgaon Chowpaty had gone viral over social media platform X. Despite Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation's (BMC) warning, people have not stopped feeding the flock of birds.

In the video, it was seen that BMC's warning board stated: "Do not feed pigeons, their droppings cause a mess and can give rise to Health concerns. As per the Law no. (4.5). The fine imposed on defaulters up to INR 500. Feeding animals/birds in designated areas."

Zucker Doctor (@DoctorLFC) brought attention to the feeding problem a few days ago on X a microblogging site.

One of the most discussed topics in the world at the moment is feeding humans to animals or birds. Particularly among Indians, feeding animals the food that they consume is a source of pride and joy. One of the most popular pastimes of Indians is feeding migrating birds, such as pigeons "chana" and seagulls "fafda and gathia." But there's a lot of discussion about the risks associated with feeding these birds human food that affects both us and them.

Doctors and medical field experts have also asserted that pigeons pose health risks to humans, particularly because of their droppings (feces) and other associated issues. When hundreds of pigeons are fed in one area, it causes congestion and poses health risks. However, there are some beliefs dictating that pigeons must be fed. 

Experts also mentioned that pigeons spread respiratory illnesses. The prevalence of allergic asthma is rising due to pigeons. Pigeons are killed in Singapore the moment they are noticed.

Apart from that Pigeons can cause lung disorders that are infectious or non-infectious, affecting both adults and children. It also puts those with asthma and allergic rhinorrhea at risk for everything from fungal infections to fibrotic lung disorders. Pigeons should ideally be adapted to seek for food, but because food is so readily available, they have lost this ability. Since pigeons have over time established themselves as the predominant bird species in urban environments, there is a significant risk that they may spread disease.

Psittacosis is an infectious illness similar to the flu that infects people and is spread by sick animals like pigeons. It is brought on by the bacteria Chlamydia psittaci. Psittacosis may seem like a simple ailment, but it can cause lung infection or pneumonia.

Pigeon droppings can lead to fungal infections including histoplasmosis. Food poisoning, salmonellosis, infections brought on by E. Coli found in bird droppings, candidiasis, cryptococcosis, a lung disease that subsequently affects the central nervous system, St. Louis encephalitis, an inflammation of the nerve system, and others. Bird droppings are also the cause of Newcastle disease, a highly contagious paramyxovirus-based avian sickness.

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