Bird census: Over a million winged guests descend on Chilika
Khurda: For the first time in more than a decade, this year, Chilika, the second largest coastal lagoon in the world has witnessed the overabundance of bird population that throng the lake every year on winter.
According to the new data collected from the bird census held on Friday, more than a million birds have descended on the lake this winter. Forest authorities claim that as many as 10,47,968 birds have arrived in the lake as against 8,93,390 recorded last year.
Out of the total counting this year, 10,21,563 waterfowls of 105 species and 26,405 water-dependent birds of 76 species, were spotted by enumerators in the 1,100 square km lagoon.
Last year, the lake was home to 8,67,834 waterfowls of 95 species and 25,556 water dependent birds of 52 species.
Around 100 enumerators divided into 21 groups comprising experts, ornithologists, wildlife enthusiasts, forest officials from Wildlife Wing, Chilika Wildlife Division, officials of Chilika Development Authority (CDA) and scientists from Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) carried out the census.
Similarly, the bird count in the Nalabana Sanctuary in the lake has also recorded an all-time-high bird count at 3,93,541. Last year, the number stood at 3,20,826.
Forest officials said that the rise in the number of birds this season could probably due to eviction of large scale prawn gheris from the lake which had helped the birds more space for roosting.