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Ornithologists to count water-fowls in Chilika Lake

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 12, 2010 - 00:08

Berhampur: Over hundred experts
are expected in Chilika, the biggest lagoon in Asia, tomorrow
to count water-fowls, which have flown to the Lake to take
shelter during winter.

Ornithologists from the Bombay Natural History Society
(BNHS), Wildlife Institute of India (WII), Salim Ali Centre
for Ornithology and Natural History (SACON), noted bird expert
U N Deb and local wildlife activists will take part to count
the number of birds taking shelter in the blue lagoon,
officials said.

The bird census would start from 6 am and continue
till 11 am, Divisional Forest Officer, Chilika Wildlife
Division, B P Acharya said.

Fishermen and tourists have been requested not to
enter the Lake during the period. "We cannot legally prohibit
them. We only appeal to them to cooperate for smooth conduct
of the census," he said.

The wildlife officials divided the 1150 sq km area of
the lagoon into 17 zones and each zone is entrusted with a
group to count the birds. Ahead of the census, training was
imparted to participants at Chandraput today, Acharya said.
Experts from several other institutions including
universities in Orissa would also be involved in the counting,
he added.

The winged guests from Palaearctic region beyond the
Himalayas in Northern Eurasia, (Caspian region, Siberia,
Kazakh, Lake Baikal and remote areas of Russia and
neighbouring countries) visit the Chilika every winter to
escape biting cold in their regions.

The Lake had hosted around 8.91 lakh birds of 155
species in the last year.

Of them over 5.12 lakh of migratory birds had visited
the 15.59 sq km Nalabana bird sanctuary inside the lake,
officials said.


First Published: Tuesday, January 12, 2010 - 00:08

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