Downtown

Residents, EFI join hands to revive Arasankazhani lake

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Thirteen avian, three amphibian and four reptile species get their habitat back, reports T.S. Atul Swaminathan

The Environmentalist Foundation of India (EFI) has restored the north-western part of the Arasankazhani Lake found near the Chemmanchery-Perumbakkam region.

This natural habitat for birds, amphibians and reptiles was covered with weeds and silt deposits, reducing the size of the water body.

Arun Krishnamurthy, Founder of EFI, says, “We regularly de-silted the lake to increase the water holding area and created G-shaped islands for the water to enter in. The islands will be a safe place for pond turtles, birds and fishes.”

As a result, thirteen species of birds, three amphibian species and four species of reptiles got their habitat back in the most natural and scientific way.

“We are planning an extensive public awareness campaign to sensitise the locals and increase their participation in conservation efforts.

Residents of Bollineni Hillside Township (BHT), near the lake, have actively participated in the project.

They also extended financial support to the restoration work that began in mid-October. The effort was helped by the co-operation of the Public Works Department.”

Native saplings will be planted along the lake to create a small forest area. Next, EFI will restore the south-western side of the lake.

The work is expected to be completed by end of February, Krishnamurthy said. V. D. Babu, a resident of BHT, said: “When I moved here a couple of years ago, the lake was filled with sand and silt. The water body was home to native tree species and birds. Unfortunately, the local authorities earmarked a burial ground in the middle of the lake, reducing the lake area.

The residents felt the need to restore and preserve the lake. We approached Krishnamurthy for the same. He agreed to take it up.”

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2020 9:20:23 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/downtown/residents-efi-join-hands-to-revive-arasankazhani-lake/article5389367.ece

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