Don't purchase Bird of Paradise from Galiff Street market (in Kolkata)Bird of Paradise is a colourful bird. This bird is found in Australia, Indonesia and Papua-New Guinea. This beautiful bird is not an inhabitant of India.
Why I don't know, this bird (or the name of this bird) has fascinated the Kolkatans since ages. People are ready to pay anything to acquire this bird. There is very high demand of this bird in the city, although there is no supply.
The main bird market of Kolkata is at Galiff Street. The market is illegal. However, on every Sunday, people throng this market to purchase different types of birds. However, if a person doesn't have clear idea about birds, there is every possibility of getting cheated.
As the bird-sellers know the fascination of Kolkatans about Bird of Paradise, they capture crow, cuckoo and parrot, colour them with a special colour and sell these birds at an exorbitant rate. As there are different species of Bird of Paradise, they somehow manage to hoodwink the willing customers regarding the beaks and tails of the bird saying that that particular Bird of Paradise (which is on display) is from a different speci.
I know many people who have been cheated by the bird-sellers of Galiff Street. They purchased coloured crow/cuckoo/parrot at an exorbitant rate thinking they were purchasing Birds of Paradise. After sometime, the crow, cuckoo or parrot get back their original colour (sometime they also die due to the harmful effect of dye) . A famous Bengali writer, Narayan Gangopadhyay, also wrote about this cheating practice of bird-sellers to sell fake Bird of Paradise in the fifties. My friend Buju (about whom I wrote earlier) paid more than Rs. 2000/- to purchase a fake Bird of Paradise way back in late-eighties!
So, please don't purchase Bird of Paradise from Galiff Street (Hatibagan) market of Kolkata.