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HyderabadHyderabad safe haven for winged visitors

Hyderabad safe haven for winged visitors

Published: 29th Nov 2021 12:47 am

Hyderabad: It is that time of the year when hundreds of feathered friends fly miles to pay a visit to the city.

Hyderabad has been a haven for several migratory birds for decades. Escaping the freezing cold weather of the Northern Hemisphere, about 50 species of birds come to the city every year by the end of October and early November. Many birds have already arrived in the city, and will stay here till the end of March, 2022.

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According to senior birder Srinivas Mallela, about 70 per cent of migratory birds from various northern regions, including Eastern Europe, Russia and Northern China, have already come to Hyderabad.

“Birders have also spotted birds which stopped in Hyderabad before flying to their destination, which is usually further south. Only last week, when I was at the Manjira Wildlife Sanctuary, I saw several garganeys and also Red-Crested Pochard, which are not easy to spot. One can also see Gadwalls, Northern Pintails and Bar-Headed Goose in and around the city,” he said.

However, the number of migratory birds has declined in the last two to three years. According to former honorary secretary of Deccan Birders, M Shafaat Ulla, the main reason these birds migrate from very cold regions to southern parts was to find food.

“They look for shallow water bodies filled with marine life and aquatic vegetation like plankton. However, Hyderabad has witnessed heavy rains during the last two monsoon seasons. As most of the water bodies in and around the city are brimming at full tank levels, many birds have chosen to fly somewhere else to settle down,” he said.

One of the most favourite destinations for the migratory birds, Hyderabad has many places where one can spot these exotic species easily.

“There are many places that one can visit to watch these birds. One of the best is Manjira Wildlife Sanctuary which is about 55 km from the city. One can also go to Himayat Sagar, Osman Sagar, Ameenpur and the Fox Sagar for birdwatching. Interestingly, some of the birds can also be spotted in the city parks, including Sanjeevaiah Park and KBR,” Hyderabad Birding Pals member Rajeev Khandelwal said.

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