Chhattisgarh will have its first Bird Park at Raipur
RAIPUR: Wildlife enthusiasts, bird-watchers and
ornithologists have something to rejoice upon, this National Wildlife Week
beginning from October 2, with Forest department all set to develop
Chhattisgarh’s first Bird Park at Raipur for bird sighting.
About 12 kilometres away from city’s pollution and
stressful life, the institute’s campus is serene, green and calm having more
than 51 species of birds with eight migratory birds. Forest department has
sanctioned Rs 76 lakh for introducing state's first bird park to be developed
as eco-tourism centre.
Confirming the move, KC Yadav, director, SFTRI said,
"The long awaited four acre of wetland of Raipur gets a signal for
development of bird park which is rich in habitat for numerous species of birds
and migratory birds. The place is soon going to be of natural importance for
nature lovers and birders, who have to carry their binoculars out in the
forests in thirst to watch birds. They can instead drive down few kilometres
and enjoy birding within limits of Raipur."
Yadav added that with the sanctioned amount of Rs 76
lakh, SFTRI plans to extend pathway for tourists and visitors on the 1.4 kilometre
track for nature walk. "Plans are underway to outspread the area of four
acre of wetland to seven acres of water-body and offer larger area for birds'
habitat with ample water, food and shelter. It will be a hotspot for
eco-tourism in coming years."
A watch-tower will be set up for tourists to climb up
and enjoy the serene surrounding of the park. Christened it as Raipur's own ‘Birds’
Paradise’, Yadav said that the gates of park are already open for visitors from
the beginning of wildlife week.
"Enthusiasts can visit the park with their
binoculars and identify birds. Aiming to spread awareness, we would also
organize bird identification workshop for school students at Birds' Paradise in
the month of November. Students of different schools would be invited to
participate in contest, identify birds and check with experts about their
guesses," Yadav said.
According to a junior research fellow of SFTRI Anurag
Vishwakarma, birds flock for mating at the park in pairs mainly during rainy
season and winters. He has spotted few like Asian Paradise Flycatcher, Green
Bee Eater, Baya weaver and 23 species.
“It’s a welcoming attempt which would create awareness
about conservation of birds and development of habitat for them in
Chhattisgarh. The campus area is comfortable for birds to nest and it give a
forest-like look, which may attract upcoming birders for sure,” AMK Bharos,
chairman, Chhattisgarh wildlife society said.
Giving space for interaction, a Facebook page 'Meri
Chidiya' has been created for bird watchers and ornithologists to share their
experiences, photographers and discussions on migratory and resident birds in
Chhattisgarh. “A reliable database could be prepared on the basis of birders’
research which would further be researched by experts.”
However, Chhattisgarh forest department also plans to
develop its first Bird Sanctuary on the wetlands of Gidhwa dam and Gidhwa pond,
the proposal which waits for approval. On the cluster of 5-6 wetlands, one can
find over 140 species of migratory and resident birds, Bharos said.