Salim Ali Facts

Salim Ali Facts
Sálim Moizuddin Abdul Ali (November 12, 1896 to June 20, 1987) was an Indian ornithologist and naturalist. Salim Ali conducted systematic bird surveys across India and his bird books helped develop the science of ornithology.
Interesting Salim Ali Facts:
Salim Ali was the ninth and youngest child born into a Muslim family in Bombay.
He attended St. Xavier College in Bombay but did not receive a degree.
He was introduced to birds by his uncle, W. S. Millard, who was secretary of the Bombay Natural History Society.
When he was eight he shot a bird and his uncle identified it as a yellow-throated sparrow.
By the age of ten he was keeping a diary of the habits of birds.
He noted that female sparrows would quickly take a new mate if he shot the male sparrow.
He spent several years in Burma before returning to India and studying zoology.
In 1928 he went to Germany to work at the Berlin Zoological Museum.
After he returned to India in 1930, he received grants from several rulers of Indian states to survey the birds in their areas.
In Kihim he observed the baya weaver and described their habit of serial polygamy.
Until her death in 1939, Salim Ali was aided in his surveys by his wife, Tehmina.
Through his work with birds, Ali became a conservationist and influenced the early leaders of an independent India to support such efforts.
He worked tirelessly to secure funding for conservation efforts.
The wealthy Singapore businessman, Loke Wan Tho, was impressed with Ali's work and provided critical financial support to the Bombay Natural History Society.
Ali helped establish the Indian Council for Agricultural Research.
He secured funding for a survey of migration patterns from the Kyasanur forest disease study.
He helped save the Silent Valley National Park.
He received numerous awards for his work including the Joy Gobinda Law Gold Medal in 1953 and in 1970 he received the Sunder Lal Hora Medal of the Indian National Science Academy.
In 1967 he was awarded both the Gold Medal of the British Ornithologists' Union and a J. Paul Getty Wildlife Conservation Prize.
In 1969 the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources awarded him the John C. Phillips memorial medal.
Among his many written works is his ten-volume Handbook of the Birds of India and Pakistan.


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