Ghana risks losing huge revenue if efforts are not made at protecting forest reserves and natural resources which are habitats for birds, an ornithologist, Mr. David Daramani, has said.
According to him, about 70 per cent of bird species could be found in Ghana and the continuous destruction of the environment was detrimental to their survival.
He raised the concern in an interview with The Ghanaian Times during a bird tour organised by the Ghana Wildlife Society over the weekend.
It was to encourage children’s interest in nature and the conservation of birds and other wildlife.
Children from various schools including Deks Educational Institute, Kinbu Senior High School, Tema Parents Association, Ave Maria and St. Martin De Porres were introduced to some migratory birds at the Pambros Salt Lagoon in Accra, and their significance to society.
Mr. Daramani said “the importance of birds to the economy cannot be over-emphasized” indicating that, “tourists who mostly come into the country, do not come only for the beauty of our historic sites, but also to view and study the different species of birds in the country and this brings revenue to the country”.
He said “birds are good agents of pollination, indicators of the seasons, especially for farmers and fisher folks to make bumper harvest and for birds like the Barn Swallows, they are solely pest control agents who feed on insects that are harmful to crops and allow farmers to make good yields which can boost the economy”.
The bird expert advised the public against killing birds for fun, and called on stakeholders to enforce laws that protected the environment, without fear or favour.
He said, “nature is important for every country to thrive and we must make a conscious effort to conserve the animals, rivers and forest areas because they are of more benefit to us than we are to them”.
A Conservation Education Officer with the Ghana Wildlife Society, Ms. Louisa Kabobah, encouraged the students to take action for birds and other wildlife to protect the society.
“Do not feel intimidated when friends mock you for taking interest in nature and animals because you are helping to preserve the environment for future generations”, she urged.
Ms. Kabobah appealed to government and corporate institutions to assist the activities of the Ghana wildlife Society to conserve the environment.
By Abigail Annoh