Facility is expected to attract nearly 30 species of free-ranging terrestrial birds

Very soon, visitors to Arignar Anna Zoological Park in Vandalur will get to see terrestrial birds feeding and playing in an open park.

Speaking to The Hindu, zoo director, K.S.S.V.P. Reddy, said already, visitors could enjoy the sight of migratory birds, housed in a walk-in aviary.

The new, open park will attract nearly 30 species of free-ranging terrestrial birds — red-vented bulbul, red-whiskered bulbul, babblers, coppersmith barbet, grey francolin, wood shrike, Indian Robin and hoopoe, to name a few, he said.

In order to attract these birds, the authorities have provided nest boxes on tree branches, along with food trays. On the ground, there are facilities for sand and ash bath.

Also, dung, farmyard manure, leaf litter and fallen branches have been strewn about so that insects and worms can make their home there. The presence of insects and worms will attract insectivorous birds.

Other attractions include nectar-bearing flowering plants and a specially-created small pond with fish, said Mr. Reddy.

“The open park will have plants to attract fruit-eating birds, insect-eating birds and grain-eating birds. We have ensured there will be enough facilities to attract all the three types of birds,” he said.

The new facility is coming up on a two-hectare plot adjacent to the sambar safari. Half the work has been completed and the remaining will be done in a month. It will be a grand sight for visitors who will be able to see all the birds without too much strain, said Mr. Reddy.

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