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Flamingos come calling for summer

Special Correspondent
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They are seen flocking the lagoons of Rameswaram, much to the surprise of ornithologists

Welcomed visitorS:Flamingos seen at Sri Kothandaramar temple shore near Danushkodi on Monday.— Photo: L. Balachandar
Welcomed visitorS:Flamingos seen at Sri Kothandaramar temple shore near Danushkodi on Monday.— Photo: L. Balachandar

Its good news for bird watchers, environmentalists and ornithologists.

To treat their eyes and mesmerise their mind, a large number of flamingos, one of the most beautiful and majestic birds have flocked the lagoons of Rameswaram.

But they have arrived when other winged visitors from foreign countries have moved to other destinations.

Flamingos have been seen in Rameswaram island, during hot summer, to the surprise of wildlife officials and ornithologists.

“We have seen flamingos during the foreign birds season. Their arrival during summer has surprised us. However, we certainly welcome them and we will analyse the reasons for their late arrival,” Shekar Kumar Niraj, Conservator of Forest, Virudhunagar range told The Hindu over phone on Monday.

According to the officials of the Gulf of Mannar Marine National Park (GMMNP), the arrival of foreign birds starts from November and they will move on to next destination from January end or first half of February.

During this period, thousands of endangered birds, particularly flamingos from Russia and other European countries, would flock different coastal belts, bird sanctuaries of Tamil Nadu particularly the Gulf of Mannar.

But this year, flamingos have landed in April and they are expected to road around here for a few weeks.

However, the late arrival has not decreased the interest of bird watchers, who are expected to make a special trip to enjoy the fascinating birds walking along the mudflats and to watch them fly in droves along the entertaining Rameswaram coast.

Though many areas from Rameswaram to Dhanushkodi are dotted with the winged visitors here and there, huge congregation has been seen at Kothandaramar Temple lagoon, which invariably attracts flamingos every year.

Lesser flamingos

The birds have been classified as lesser flamingos.

Most of them look well built with bright pink colour.

Their legs are red. Wading through the shallow areas, they are seen enjoying the food available under the water.

Rare

Flamingos, the officials said, were considered as one of those rare species of birds that survive in the caustic environment.

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