SIVAGANGA: The season is nearly a month away, but the migratory birds have started arriving at Vettangudi bird sanctuary. Ask District Forest Officer (DFO) D Rameshwaran, he would say that the early arrival of the winged visitors is a sign of good monsoon this year.
“The season generally starts in September. Many more migratory birds are likely to come to the area,” said D Rameshwaran, adding that usually around 23 species of birds from various parts of the subcontinent and Sri Lanka visit the 38.4-hectare sanctuary that spans across Chinnakolukudipatti, Periyakolukudipatti and Vettangudi villages.
“Birds like egrets (little, medium, large and cattle), heron (night and pond), open bill stork, Indian white eye, waterhen, black headed ibis and white-throated kingfisher visit the sanctuary during the season. As of now, around 2,000 birds are here, and that is unusual,” the DFO said.
Meanwhile, Forest Range Officer of Thirupattur A Mathivannan said that last year the birds visited the place in two batches, first in August and then in October. “Never had they come in two batches, except last year. In 2018, the birds stayed in the sanctuary only for a short while due to the drought,” he said, adding that the officials are expecting around 20,000 birds this year. The range officer said that the birds take at least four months for nesting, hatching and fledging. “We expect good rain in the coming days, we hope the birds would stay till the season ends,” he added.
Injured tusker dies
Coimbatore: An ailing tusker that was under treatment of the Forest Department veterinarians in the Mettupalayam forest range, died on Friday. The officials said that it had suffered injuries in palate possibly after a fight with another tusker, leading to its starvation and death.