Bhitarkanika records increase in migrant water birds visit
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Last Updated: Wednesday, August 21, 2013, 15:37
  
Kendrapara: Bhitarkanika National Park in Odisha played host to nearly 80,000 migrant water birds this monsoon, registering a substantial rise in the number of winged guests in comparison to the preceding year.

As against 70,105 visiting birds recorded last year, this season 79,548 avian species had made Bhitarkanika wetland spots their nesting sites.

With this, Bhitarkanika national park has once again re-established its place in the state as one of the congenial heronries for migrant water birds.

There has been a steady rise in the number of local water-birds who thronged the heronry and wetland spots here for their seasonal sojourn.

The breakup of local migrant birds arriving here in past years is 2007- 52,096, 2008- 71,383, 2009-70,484, 2010- 41,168, 2011-59,973 and 2012- 70,105.

"As the monsoon was erratic this time, we expected lesser number of local migBhitarkanika records increase in migrant water birds visit

Bhitarkanika National Park in Odisha played host to nearly 80,000 migrant water birds this monsoon, registering a substantial rise in the number of winged guests in comparison to the preceding year.

As against 70,105 visiting birds recorded last year, this season 79,548 avian species had made Bhitarkanika wetland spots their nesting sites.

With this, Bhitarkanika national park has once again re-established its place in the state as one of the congenial heronries for migrant water birds.

There has been a steady rise in the number of local water-birds who thronged the heronry and wetland spots here for their seasonal sojourn.

The breakup of local migrant birds arriving here in past years is 2007- 52,096, 2008- 71,383, 2009-70,484, 2010- 41,168, 2011-59,973 and 2012- 70,105.

"As the monsoon was erratic this time, we expected lesser number of local migrant birds would visit the site. But we were proved wrong. Local migrants birds visited in large number," Divisional Forest Officer, Rajnagar Mangrove (wildlife) Forest Division, Kedrar Kumar Jena, said.

The onset of monsoon had triggered chirpy cacophony along the marshy wetland spots in Bhitarkanika national park. As the spell of rains was not uniform, their arrival was delayed this time.

Prominent among the species arriving here for nesting are Grey Heron, Purple Heron, Darter, Cormorant, Large Egret, Intermediary Egret and Little Egret.

The birds' habitat is spread across around four-hectares-stretch and the winged creatures fly around the water bodies adding to the scenic beauty of the place.

There is ample food security for the birds as the place criss-crossed by innumerable water inlets and nullahs is free of human interference, the DFO said.

Lack of human interference, ideal climatic condition, cool breeze and the river system here all have emerged to the liking of these delicate chirpy winged species.

Noted ornithologist Dr Salim Ali made a chance-discovery of Bhitarkanika birds habitat while on a casual visit to Bhitarkanika in 1981.

Forest personnel said over a dozen types of local residential birds congregate at Bagagahana heronry within the park for nesting and breeding every year.

The species are Open Bill Stork, Little Cormorant, Intermediary Egret, Large Egret, Little Egret, Purple Heron, Grey Heron, Night Heron, Darter, White Ibis and Cattle Egret.

PTI


First Published: Wednesday, August 21, 2013, 15:33


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