Co-founder of birding society drowns in Rupununi

Kooldeep Looknauth, President of the Guyana Tropical Amazon Bird Society (GTABS) and tour guide, drowned last Thursday in the Rupununi.

This is according to the findings of a post-mortem examination but police are still investigating the man’s death.

Looknauth, 42, of lot 77 C Light Street, Alberttown, was found dead near a river in the Rupununi last Thursday. Although the post-mortem examination performed on the body yesterday concluded that Looknauth died by drowning Police Crime Chief Leslie James told this newspaper that investigations into the matter continue.

Kooldeep Looknauth
Kooldeep Looknauth

Andy Narine, the brother of Looknauth, told Stabroek News yesterday that his brother contacted him last week Monday (July 28), to give him an update on the work he was doing for the society. Narine added that he received a call on Thursday (July 31) that his brother was reported as a missing person at the Lethem Police Station. He said relatives received another call at 3pm, with the news of Looknauth being discovered dead. On that second call, Narine said, the caller even offered to bury him [Looknauth] in a shallow grave.

Narine stated that the he was informed by friends in the Rupununi district that his brother had stopped at a village to have a few drinks in the company of another man. He said his brother was left at the village and had to make his way back to the ranch. It was while making his way to the ranch that Looknauth met his demise.

“He was found decomposed with a shirt on,” said Narine, adding that Looknauth’s pants and cellular phone were found on the other side of the river, where the ranch is located. He said that for him the circumstances of his brother’s death raise suspicions.

In addition, the devastated brother told this publication that he is disappointed that his brother was “abandoned” and left to make the perilous journey back to the ranch.

Kooldeep Looknauth standing outside of the jeep on one of his trips in the interior.
Kooldeep Looknauth standing outside of the jeep on one of his trips in the interior.

He said he did not only lose his brother but a colleague with over 14 years of experience, who knew the field and the birds they studied very well.

He said that the work of the society will be greatly affected. “Guyana has lost a hero,” opined Narine, who also said that the success of the study and data collection that was being undertaken may be in limbo. However Narine resolved to continue the work of the society in honour of Looknauth, come what may.

Looknauth and Narine founded the GTABS in 2000 and have been gathering data on Tropical birds in Guyana. Looknauth, according to Narine, worked with both local and foreign researchers. He said that his brother even held talks with students from the University of Guyana.

Looknauth, who is survived by his parents and siblings, is set to be cremated today.

Latest in Local News

default placeholder

Confident Windies seek happy ending

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – West Indies will seek to write a happy ending to a promising Tri-Nations campaign when they clash with Australia in Sunday’s final, in a contest that brings together the champions of the Twenty20 and 50-overs World Cups.

default placeholder

Gov’t needs to put more money in economy – private sector head

The Private Sector Commission (PSC) says it is willing to work with the government in all of its endeavours but it needs to increase spending in the economy.

default placeholder

Private sector calls for full public debate on parking meters

Full public debate on the proposed installation of parking meters in the capital was called for yesterday by the Private Sector Commission (PSC).

Ivelaw Lloyd Griffith

No politics at UG

Less than two weeks after he assumed office as the Tenth Vice Chancellor of the University of Guyana Professor Ivelaw Lloyd Griffith has said that he is not prepared to be the VC of a university where politics intrudes and undermines the work of students and faculty.

default placeholder

Cops getting crowd control training in China

Twenty ranks of the Guyana Police Force (GPF) are now in China undergoing specialised training, GINA said on Thursday. Minister of Public Security Khemraj Ramjattan said the training is a result of a promise previously made by the Chinese government.

default placeholder

Guyana awaiting UN chief’s move on border controversy

Minister of Foreign Affairs Carl Greenidge yesterday assured that United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is still actively considering the way forward to resolve the Guyana-Venezuela border controversy.

default placeholder

Fury over some appointments to Linden TV station Board

The addition of some persons to the Board of Trustees of Region 10 Broadcasting Inc (RBI) has generated controversy with at least one regional councillor threatening protests over the appointments and the manner in which they were done.

Robin Raymond Elkanah Gordon

Body of missing Parfait Harmonie man pulled from canal

The partially decomposed body of a man who was missing for two days, was yesterday afternoon found in a canal at Onderneeming, Parfait Harmonie, West Bank Demerara, a short distance from his home.

Comments

About these comments

The comments section is intended to provide a forum for reasoned and reasonable debate on the newspaper's content and is an extension of the newspaper and what it has become well known for over its history: accuracy, balance and fairness. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments which contain attacks on other users, slander, coarse language and profanity, and gratuitous and incendiary references to race and ethnicity.

Stay updated! Follow Stabroek News on Facebook or Twitter.

Get the day's headlines from SN in your inbox every morning: