|COVID-19: Lockdown prevents Jammu Aquarists, aviculturists to feed fishes, birds|
Early Times Report
Jammu, Mar 31: As 21-day lockdown announced by the Government is an attempt to keep citizens indoors in view of rising threat of COVID-19 pandemic, but unfortunately the aquarists and aviculturists were upset with the restrictions as they could not feed birds and fishes inside shops.
Pertinent to mention here that essential commodities and essential services were allowed to function to avoid shortage of grocery items, medicines, ration, fruits, vegetables to people during lockdown.
Though, Jammu Municipal Corporation has appealed to people to feed stray animals and dogs as they were unable to get food due to lockdown while many organisations have raised concern over feed to birds and fishes inside shops which have been left unattended.
''I am dealing in fish farming and sale of aquariums but for the last six days my shop at Bahu Fort is shut due to lockdown,'' a shopkeeper said.
He further said that he could not feed fishes and apprehended that they might have died.
''Fishes in aquarium needed to be fed at least once in 24 hours and not more than 5 to 6 fishes survive in aquarium depending upon its size,'' he stated and added that secondly, water should also be changed once a week because contaminated water affects aquatic life.
''The government has allowed the essential services and essential commodities to function during lockdown but nobody thought of these creatures,'' he further stated and demanded that at least once a week, those who were dealing in this business, should be allowed to open shops for cleaning and feeding them. He also said that oxygen gadgets do not operate without electricity supply and for the past six days, his shop is closed.
Tinku Chand, from Jharkhand, presently living in Jammu, was dealing in sale of birds and running a small shop in Gole Market area of Gandhi Nagar.
He observed, ''I have not fed the birds for the last one-week,'' and ''many high breed species of birds are caged inside the shop and the feed served days back was limited.''
Besides feed, hygiene, cleanliness of cages and surroundings was must for the avian species but it was impossible to carry out due to lockdown, he further observed that, ''the feed served to birds is inside the shop and I doubt some birds might have died.''
However, many chicken traders also complaint the same claiming that they could not feed them due to restrictions and if chickens die inside shops, may spread epidemic.
Meanwhile, daily farmers said that the feed for cattle (dry forages), pasture, grass hay, straw, was also not available in the market as shops were completely shut due to lock and alleged that, ''the government is neglecting this side and if the lockdown period extends, it may trigger problem.''
The dealers appealed to the government that at least once a week, the people into this business must be allowed to carry on the activity to save hundreds of species of birds, fishes and cattle.
Many animal lovers have also raised the concern requesting the government to look into the matter of concern.