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Okhla Bird Sanctuary to reopen after 5 months: All you need to know

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Noida, Sep 14: Have you been missing the excitement of visiting a sanctuary for the past few months? The wait is over! Noida's Okhla Bird Sanctuary, considered a haven for various resident bird species and a stopover for thousands of migratory birds, is set to be reopened for visitors from September 15.

The bird Sanctuary that was closed for visitors during lockdown has been renovated by the forest department.

Okhla Bird Sanctuary to reopen after 5 months: All you need to know

"We have decided to reopen the Okhla Bird Sanctuary from Tuesday. It was closed in March in wake of the nationwide lockdown. This was the first time the sanctuary had been closed for visitors for such a long time. We hope that nature lovers, especially birders, can enjoy their visits again, with better infrastructure," PK Srivastava, divisional forest department (DFO), Gautam Budh Nagar told Hindustan Times.

As precaution, a high-resolution 360-degrees camera for real-time monitoring of birds, a new command centre, more shelters and sheds, including sitting areas and new signage highlighting the flora and fauna, also await visitors.

Okhla Bird Sanctuary is situated in Noida, Gautam Buddh Nagar district, on Delhi-Uttar Pradesh state border and known as a haven for over 300 bird species, especially waterbirds.

A total of 302 species have confirmed records from Okhla bird sanctuary and the areas in its immediate vicinity. An additional 27 species have been listed by Harris (2001) as probable, but unconfirmed, occurrence. In January 2011, as a part of Asian Waterbird Census 2011, a leucistic coot, known for its unusual bright white plumage, was spotted with the flock of common coots, for the first time in India.

The sanctuary hosts over 400 species year round and over 1 lakh migratory birds in winter months. It hosts 30% of the 1200 to 1300 bird species recorded in the Indian sub-continent.

A new set of rules are set to be followed to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus during your visit to national parks and wildlife sanctuaries.

  • Temperature checks will be conducted for all the guests at the entry point.
  • Any guest whose body temperature is higher than normal will not be allowed to enter the park.
  • If their temperature is found to be higher than normal, he/she will be taken immediately for medical assistance by a dedicated team in a vehicle specially selected for that purpose.
  • Tourists who are more than 10 years of age and more than 65 years of age will not be allowed to enter the park. Park authorities will check the age certificate at the entry point.
  • Wearing masks and face shields will be mandatory for all the tourists. Every vehicle will have to carry a sanitiser at all times.
  • All tourist vehicles will carry only 50% tourists of their respective capacity.

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