154 new bird varieties spotted

Updated - March 16, 2015 05:35 am IST

Published - March 16, 2015 12:00 am IST - KANNUR:

As many as 154 new bird varieties have been spotted during the annual bird survey at the Aralam wildlife sanctuary, increasing the total number of bird species found there to 240.

The three-day survey that concluded on Sunday was conducted by nearly 60 birdwatchers from south India, sanctuary officials said. They surveyed the sanctuary from five different locations.

Malabar pied hornbill

The survey was conducted under the supervision of experts from the Forest Department and the Malabar Natural History Society (MNHS). The participants recorded sightings of the Malabar pied hornbill, a bird that has become very rare in the State. Also sighted was the great Indian hornbill.

Aralam wildlife warden K. Jothiprakash said the sightings of the rare birds a number of times in the sanctuary testified to its ecological importance.

Ornithologist P. Pramod of the Salim Ali Centre, Coimbatore; Deputy Conservator of Forests K.V. Uthaman, and birder Sathyan Meppayoor participated in the survey.

16th edition

The survey was the 16th annual bird census to be conducted in the sanctuary.

The valedictory function of the survey on Sunday was inaugurated by Assistant Collector Haritha V. Kumar.

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