Top 15 Bird Sanctuaries in India for Bird Lovers
Few sights delight the senses as much as birds. They are one of the many gifts that nature has bestowed upon us. There are several bird sanctuaries in India which house a wide variety of exotic bird species. From ornithologists to laymen, they attract everybody. It’s estimated that India is home to over 1200 species of birds, and most of them can be viewed in these sanctuaries. From the Great Indian Hornbill to the Great Indian Bustard, these bird sanctuaries in India are the best places for a bird lover.
1. Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary, Rajasthan
If you are an avid bird lover, then Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary is where you need to be. Also known as Keoladeo Ghana National Park, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a protected sanctuary. Visiting this bird sanctuary lets you come across almost 360 bird species. Among the various kinds of bird species found here, the most famous ones are geese, pelicans, crane, ducks, eagles, hawks, shanks, stints and wagtails, among others. Apart from the birds, Bharatpur Bird Sanctuary is also home to several kinds of wildlife like nilgai, sambar, chital and boar.
2. Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary, Haryana
Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary, spread over an area of 1.43sq.km, is another bird reserve located in Haryana. One of the most popular bird sanctuaries in India, its home to more than 250 species of resident and migratory birds. The sanctuary receives a large number of migratory birds from Siberia, Russia, Turkey and Eastern Europe during the winters. The various kinds of birds which Sultanpur Bird Sanctuary houses range from red collared dove, rock pigeon, white-throated kingfisher and great egret, among others.
Timings: 6am – 4:30pm
3. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, Goa
Happen to be a bird lover? Then visit the Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary. Named after the famous ornithologist Salim Moizuddin Abdul Ali, this narrow stretch of mangrove forest lies along the estuarine part of Mandovi River and the western tip of Chorao Island in Goa. The Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary is accessible by a regular ferry service. There is a bird watching tower which allows visitors to observe a different variety of birds like woodpeckers, sandpipers, kingfishers and white egrets, besides others. Besides, various kinds of animals like marsh crocodiles, cormorants, drongos, and jackals, besides others, can also be found here.
Timings: 6am – 6pm
4. Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Kerala
Kumarakom in Kerala is famous for many things, and one of them is Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary. Located on the banks of the Vembanad Lake, its spread over an area of 14 acres of lush dense greenery. This bird sanctuary, which is counted among the famous bird sanctuaries in India, attracts bird lovers in large numbers. One can spot numerous species of resident and seasonal birds here. The pristine Pathiramanal Island on the lake is a perfect spot for migratory birds coming from Siberia and Russia. The other kinds of birds found here range from woodpeckers, parrots and teals to owls and kingfishers.
Timings: 6am – 6 pm
5. Kaundinya Bird Sanctuary, Andhra Pradesh
Kaundinya Bird Sanctuary is one of the must visit bird sanctuaries in India, and visiting it is a delight for nature lovers and bird enthusiasts. Located about 86km from Horsley Hills and stretching over 358sq. km, this sanctuary is renowned for its rich biodiversity. The various types of birds which can be found here include rosy pelicans, pumas, jungle cats and monitor lizards, apart from others. Kaundinya Bird Sanctuary is also home to a wide variety of wildlife such as porcupines, sloth bears, tigers and pumas, to name a few. Read more…
6. Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary, Tamil Nadu
Vedanthangal, in local language means, “hamlet of the hunters”. Vedanthangal Bird Sanctuary in Tamil Nadu is located in Kanchipuram and is counted amongst the oldest bird sanctuaries in India. The sanctuary is spread over 30 acres of land and is visited by almost 40,000 migratory birds every year. The best time to visit the sanctuary is between the months of October to January. On visiting this sanctuary, the various kinds of birds you will come across are pintails, common sandpipers, spoonbills and grey wagtails, apart from many others.
7. Chilika Lake Bird Sanctuary, Orissa
Chilika Lake Bird Sanctuary lays claim to being the largest brackish water lake in Asia. Apart from its natural beauty which is a spectacular sight to come across, its also visited by a wide variety of birds. Chilika Lake is visited by over 160 species of birds, especially in the peak season, which is between November and February. The various kinds of birds which you have a chance of spotting here are gulls, flamingoes, white bellied sea eagles and ospreys, apart from others. Many migratory birds from Central Asia, Iran and Siberia also visit the lake.
Timings: 6am – 7pm
8. Kutch Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary, Gujarat
Another beautiful bird sanctuary in India is the Kutch Great Indian Bustard in Gujarat. Its popularity, as is quite evident, is due to the fact that its home to a significant population of Great Indian Bustard – a neutral colored ground dwelling bird species with a long neck and ostrich-legs long legs. Apart from the Great Indian Bustard, the other kinds of birds found in Kutch Great Indian Bustard Sanctuary include Houbara Bustards, florican Bustard and Macqueen’s Bustards, among others. Nilagais, chinkaras, jungle cats and desert cats are also found here.
Timings: 6am – 6pm
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9. Mayani Bird Sanctuary, Maharashtra
Mayani Bird Sanctuary, located in close proximity to Vaduj town of Maharashtra, is a favorable tourist destination for those who love bird watching. It’s a wetland ecosystem very rich in biodiversity that helps the growth of scattered forests and cactus. Mayani Bird Sanctuary is home to almost 400 migratory birds which can be spotted during the winter season between the months of November to January. Some of the birds found here include painted storks, black ibis, kingfishers and brahminy ducks, besides others.
Timings: 7am to 7pm
10. Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary, Gujarat
Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary in Gujarat is one of the largest and most famous bird sanctuary in India. This sanctuary, famous for its wetland vegetation, is spread over an area of 120sq. km and is a great place for spotting various kinds of bird species. Some of the kinds of birds which can be found here are geese, spoonbills, pelicans and eagles, among others.
11. Samaspur Bird Sanctuary in Raebareli, Uttar Pradesh
Uttar Pradesh, one of the largest states in India, is home to several attractions which attract the tourists. One of such attractions is Samaspur Bird Sanctaury in Uttar Pradesh. If you happen to be a bird lover, then it is a sanctuary which you should definitely visit. This bird sanctuary is home to more than 200 species of birds including spot bill, kingfisher, common teel and whistling teel, besides others. The sanctuary is also home to a lake which consists of various fishes. November to March is the best time for spotting the exotic birds in this sanctuary.
12. Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary is another bird sanctuary in Uttar Pradesh. Situated around a freshwater lake, its home to more 250 species of nomadic and domestic birds. Some of the birds found here include pintail, red crested pochard, white ibis and purple moorhen, apart from others.
13. Bakhira Bird Sanctuary, Uttar Pradesh
Bakhira Bird Sanctuary, a large natural floodplain and wetland is a beautiful place to view some unique species of birds. Established in 1980, the lake surrounds a village which also goes by the same name. Some of the birds which you can find here include purple moorhen, kaima and swamphen. Bakhira Bird Sanctuary is also a habitat for mongooses, jungle cats and golden jackals, apart from others.
14. Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, Karnataka
Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary, near Mysore, is one of the largest bird sanctuaries of Karnataka. Located in close proximity to Mysore, this sanctuary comprises of six small islands which are located by the banks of the river Cauvery. Some of the varieties of birds that the sanctuaries is famous for include stork billed kingfishers, Indian shags, oriental darters and streak throated swallows, among others. Apart from the wide variety of avifauna found in this sanctuary, this sanctuary is also home to various kinds of animal species including mugger crocodile, monitor lizard, flying fox and Indian grey mongoose, besides others.
15. Chintamani Kar Bird Sanctuary, West Bengal
Another famous and popular bird sanctuary is Chintamani Kar Bird Sanctuary located on the rural areas of Kolkata outskirts. It’s a great place to spend some quality time watching the exotic quality of birds like black headed bulbul, little spider hunter and fish eagle, besides others.
Timings: 7am – 4pm
These are the most famous bird sanctuaries in India which should be visited by any bird lover. Visit these bird sanctuaries and enjoy the experience provided by these magnificent beauties of nature.