Is euthanising birds the only solution?

It is sad that mynahs in Potong Pasir were captured and euthanised because they were making a lot of noise (Major intervention to tackle mynah issue; Dec 29, 2018).

I remember the times when many households had roosters that loudly announced the rise of the sun daily.

There were times then when people waited for birds to flock back home and enjoyed the myriad sounds they made every evening.

They were - and indeed are - music to the ears.

In the name of civilisation and development, we have misused and abused all the natural resources around us.

Society is now trying to rediscover kampung living and is turning to organic edibles.

This is a good sign but it is time we recognise that we have done enough damage to the planet.

We have encroached into the jungles and displaced flora and fauna. In a small island like ours, it is inevitable for us to expand our dwelling places but with nowhere else to go, birds, squirrels and rodents do return.

They are then seen as invaders of "our" territory. Once, someone even referred to the chirp of birds as "the worst morning alarm", conveniently forgetting that the birds were once the community's best morning alarms.

In my estate, I see many motorbikes that make a lot of noise. It is worse when they are ridden under the blocks or revved up inside carparks. The sound echoes and is deafening, and the noise even travels up to the eighth floor of my block.

I have lodged complaints with the town council, Land Transport Authority and National Environment Agency, but to no avail.

If we consider chirping birds noisy and euthanise them, shouldn't we be stricter on noise pollution by the two-wheelers?

Is euthanising animals the only solution? Aren't there alternative solutions like releasing those birds in places like Pulau Ubin or Sungei Buloh?

I am sure we can think of better solutions for such incidents.

Ramamurthy Mahesh Kumar

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 02, 2019, with the headline 'Is euthanising birds the only solution?'. Print Edition | Subscribe