XR Kenya & The POlly Foundation

Statement on the ongoing killing of 5.8 million quelea birds in Kisumu following the rice farm invasion

According to the January 12 2023 issue of Business Daily magazine, the Kenyan government has begun an aerial bird control operation to eradicate the destructive quelea birds that have invaded rice farms in Kisumu County. The Ministry of Agriculture's initiative aims to eradicate 5.8 million birds in nine different locations where the birds hide at night. While the operation has begun, we at The Polly Foundation and Extinction Rebellion Kenya are urging the Ministry of Agriculture to cease and desist from using aerial pesticide spraying to control Quelea birds since the bird species is rare and should be protected. Aerial spraying, we believe, destroys the environment and habitat of other birds and animals. Furthermore, chemicals will have an impact on the wetland ecosystem. As a result, we are joining other environmental groups in urging the government to use mechanical control of the birds, as well as other alternatives such as monitoring their breeding and migratory patterns, erecting scarecrows, and hiring bird chasers to protect the farms.