Winged Guests Flock To Chilika Lake

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Bhubaneswar: Migratory birds have started arriving at India’s largest brackish water lagoon Chilika.

People can now listen to birds chirping and singing at Mangalajodi on the banks of the lake.

The avian arrival, though late by two weeks, has gladdened the hearts of forest officials and bird watchers alike.

Usually, the birds fly down to Chilika on October 1. The delay is being attributed to the cyclonic storm Titli which hit Ganjam and Gajapati districts earlier this month.

Meanwhile, 22 camps in Chilika have been set up by the Forest Department and police patrolling have also started to keep poachers at bay.

“The camps have been set up at places most frequented by the birds. As many as 30 staff have also been deployed for the protection of the guests. Local youths have also been engaged,” said Chilika Forest Department DFO Kedarnath Swain.

So far birds of 50 species have already arrived at Nalbana Bird Sanctuary in Chilika and Mangalajodi, he added.

Members of Pakshi Suraksha Samiti in Mangalajodi have also been patrolling to stop poaching activities.

As many as 160 avian species fly thousands of miles across continents, from snow-covered Siberia, Caspian Sea, Baikal Lake to remote parts of Russia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Ladakh, US and Canada, to the marshy lands of Nalabana inside Chilika spread across 1,000 sq km.

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