Slight drop in arrival of migratory birds at Pong Dam lake

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Shimla, Feb 3 (PTI) The number of migratory birdsarriving at the Pong Dam Lake this winter witnessed a slightdecrease in comparison to the last season, while the types ofwinged visitors saw a marginal increase.

Over 1.32 lakh water-fowls of 95 species visited PongDam Lake, a Ramsar site, in Kangra district during this winteras compared to 1.45 lakh and 91 species of the previous year,said Ashwani Gulati, Chief Wildlife Warden.

Most of these birds migrate from the trans-Himalayaregion. Water level in the reservoir had increased, reducingthe shallow water area inhabited by the water-fowls, he said.

The dominant species this year were Common Pochard,Bar Headed Goose, Northern Pintail, Common Coot and the GreatCormorant.

Pied Avocet was seen for the first time and the CommonShelduck, rarely seen in Indian wetlands, was also spotted.

Other winged species which visited the spot were GreatCrested Grebe, Black Necked Grebe, Greylag Goose, Red CrestedPochard, Ferruginous Pochard, Common Merganser, EurasianSpoonbill,Greater White Fronted Goose and Western Reef Egret.

Over the last few years Pong Dam Lake has become anideal destination for winter sojourn for many species ofmigratory birds, Gulati said.

The two-day survey by the forest department wasconducted in the end of January this year.

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