Chilika: Spread across an area over 1,100 sq km, the brackish water lagoon is the largest wintering ground for migratory birds in India. Millions of migratory birds flock the lake every winter season. The lagoon hosts winged guests from the remotest corners of Russia, Mongolia, Siberia, Central and Southeast Asia, Caspian Sea, Ladakh and Himalayas every year during the migratory season.
Over 12 lakh migratory birds were spotted during the annual bird census in Chilika Lake, the first Indian wetlands of international importance under Ramsar Convention and UNESCO world heritage site,this year. This is the highest ever bird count in the water lagoon in last two decades.
This year, the forest officials spotted 12,04,351, to be exact, migratory birds from across 111 species during the annual bird count in Asia’s largest brackish water lagoon yesterday, said reports.Related Post no
Last year, the number of birds was estimated at around 10.70 lakh. In 2019, around 10.47 lakh birds were counted at the lagoon.null
Of the total bird population counted in Chilika this year, as many as 38,475 birds flocked the wetland from local areas, added reports.
“As compared to the last year data, the bird population in Chilika has increased by 1.35 lakh. Similarly, Nalabana saw an increase of 18,000 migratory birds and two new species of migratory duck– Falcated teal and Mallard duck– were spotted during the census in Mangalajodi sector,” informed Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Of Chilika Wildlife, Kedar Kumar Swain.null
Earlier on Tuesday, the annual bird census was conducted in five ranges under the Chilika wildlife division- Tangi, Balugaon, Rambha, Satapada and Chilika. As many as 21 teams comprising over 111 wildlife officials, experts, volunteers and environmentalists were engaged in the exercise which began at 6 AM and concluded at around 12.30 PM.
The bird census conducted on Tuesday revealed that more than 11.42 lakh birds have come to the lagoon this year which is more than previous year’s 11.04 lakh winged visitors, they said.
“Removal of 160 square kilometre of encroachment in 2018-2019, has resulted in record arrival of annual guests,” Chilika Development Authority (CDA) Chief Executive, Susanta Nanda said
The annual bird census was conducted in five ranges like Tangi, Balugaon, Rambha, Satapada and Chilika, under the Chilika Wildlife Division.
Twenty-one teams comprising over 111 wildlife officials, experts, volunteers and environmentalists were engaged in the exercise which began at 6 AM and concluded at around 12.30 PM of Tuesday, the official said.
The census teams also include staffers of CDA, experts from Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) and the members of the Pakhi Suraksha Samiti (Bird Protection Group)the hardcore conservationist group of Mangal jodi.
The lake is spread over an area of 1,100 square kilometres in three districts – Puri, Khurda and Ganjam.