Migratory birds usually start flocking in Hakaluki Haor, the largest water body in the country, and delight visitors with their chirping and fluttering this time every year.
This year, arrival of migratory birds sees a fall in their numbers from that of the previous two years.
After conducting a survey on January 26 and 27, organisers told this correspondent that about 37,931 birds of 51 species were counted during the two-day survey programme.
The number of migratory birds last year was 45,100 of 44 species, 58,281 of 50 species in 2017 and 34,264 of 56 species in 2016.
Besides, the number of birds which usually arrive a bit early has also decreased from that of the previous years, bird watchers said.
The census, organised by Bangladesh Bird Club and Bangladesh unit of International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), was conducted by a team, led by prominent bird specialist Enam Ul Haque, also national coordinator of Waterfowl Census in Bangladesh.
Motin Mia, a resident of Pusainagar village in Kulaura upazila of Moulvibazar, said due to high water level in wetlands and shortage of bird feed this winter a smaller number of migratory birds arrived in the haor areas.
Bird specialist Bashir Ahmed, also a member of the survey team, said this year they counted 37,931 birds of 51 species in the haor areas, which is much lower than the last two years.
They found some dead migratory birds in Balijuri Beel under Hakaluki haor area during the survey program on January 26 and 27 this year, he said, adding that he suspects that the birds were killed by setting poisonous traps.
One of the journalists of the haor area recently informed him that bird hunting is going on by setting poisonous traps and many locals are eating such dead birds, he said, adding that local conscious people should raise their voices against such an ill practice as eating poisoned dead birds is harmful for human health.
Aquatic trees like Hizol, Koroch Boran and Murta, which are being planted to set up resting places for the migratory birds in Chatalbil and Dohobil areas, are inadequate, Centre for Natural Resource Studies (CNRS) Officer Moniruzzaman Chowdhury said.