Insect poop threatens to damage marble at India’s Taj Mahal
LUCKNOW, India (AP) — Swarms of insects breeding in a polluted river near the Taj Mahal are threatening the intricate marble inlay work at the 17th century monument to love by leaving green and black patches of waste on its walls, archaeological experts said Monday.
Workers scrub the walls clean every day, but the regular scrubbing can damage the floral mosaics and shiny marble surface, said Bhuvan Vikram of the Archaeological Survey of India.
“A series of marble panels depicting plant motifs on the walls or reflective tiles used in this part of the monument are becoming disfigured,” Vikram said.
Authorities are looking for a permanent solution to the problem created by the insects from the genus Goeldichironomus, a type of elongated fly that resembles a mosquito, that is proliferating in the polluted Yamuna River. The river has stagnated to the point that it no longer supports fish that once kept the insects