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A flock of at least three dozen Flamingos flying above the Pant Nagar area in Mumbai’s Ghatkopar hit an incoming Emirates flight, official sources said here on Tuesday. The incident happened on Monday night. The flight EK-508, with around 310 passengers, made a safe landing around 9.15 p.m., and no carcasses of the majestic pink birds were found on the airport runway.

Later, forest officials recovered the carcasses of around 36 Flamingos in the Laxminagar area of Pant Nagar, outside the airport boundaries, and a search is on for more.

Officials declined to reveal the extent of damage suffered by the Emirates aircraft and a statement is likely to be issued later.

Wildlife experts like Vanshakti NGO’s D. Stalin said that the cause of the birds flying into the Emirates aircraft is being probed, but surmised that the new power lines passing through the flamingo sanctuary in Thane Creek may have resulted in disorientation to the birds.

An important wetland reserve, the Thane Creek Wildlife Sanctuary comprising the Flamingo Reserve was declared a Ramsar Site in August 2022.

The 65 sqkm sanctuary, among the biggest in Asia, is spread from Vashi in Navi Mumbai to Bhandup and attracts lakhs of Flamingos plus other migratory birds for food and nesting, besides tourists and nature lovers.