World’s fastest bird homes on Statue of Unity

The Statue of Unity is the world’s tallest statue, with a height of 182 meters situated on the Narmada River in Kevadia, Gujarat, India. Shaheen falcon, the world’s fastest bird, a non-migratory subspecies of the peregrine falcon has been seen perching on the statue over the last few weeks, giving rise to speculations that it is building a nest at the world’s tallest statue. The name Shaheen is derived from Persian, Shah for ‘king’ and een for ‘birds’, thus meaning the ‘king of birds’.

“During my visit to SoU some weeks ago, I was looking at the statue when my eyes spotted the bird. Usually, SoU is frequented by pigeons that are known to perch on tall statues or highrises. But this bird seemed different, so I captured it on my camera,” a bird-watcher from Vadodara told the press.

“ I was surprised to see that it was a Shaheen falcon. It kept flying around and then perched on a vent on the statue. The bird has been seen around the statue several times and it is possible that it is looking to make a nest there. It is rare for the bird to make its nest on a man-made structure,” he added.

Upadhyay, who has been documenting the birds in the state for years, said that the presence of falcon on the SoU may well keep the pigeons away and reduce the problem of droppings that strains the grand statue.

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