Kenya declares war on millions of birds after they raid crops

Toxic pesticides used to eradicate grain-eating quelea may harm the country’s endangered raptors, say conservationists

A drive by the Kenyan government to kill up to 6 million red-billed quelea birds that have invaded farms will have unintended consequences for raptors and other wild species, experts have warned.

The continuing drought in the Horn of Africa has reduced the amount of native grass, whose seeds are queleas’ main food source, causing the birds to increasingly invade grain fields, putting 2,000 acres (800 hectares) of rice under threat. About 300 acres of rice fields have been destroyed by the birds.

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