Call to protect biodiversity of Munderikkadavu

Munderikkadavu and surrounding areas in the district have to be protected with the involvement of local bodies to develop it into a bird sanctuary, a report prepared by birders on the proposal for conserving the area as a bird sanctuary said.

The findings and the recommendations of the report came up for discussion at a seminar organised in the Munderi panchayat hall here on Monday.

Munderikkadavu that formed part of the Kattampally wetland area has been seen as a biodiversity treasure house as it is estimated to have over 200 species of birds, which include over 60 species of migrant birds. According to the report, the developing Munderikkadavu as a bird sanctuary can open up immense eco-tourism possibility for the panchayat.

The seminar on the report was organised to draw an action plan for conserving the area as a bird sanctuary with the co-operation of the Tourism and Forest Departments and the district panchayat.

The report was prepared by a group of volunteers headed by birdwatcher Khaleel Chovva. The group included science club members and science teachers of the Munderi Government Higher Secondary School as well as social workers and members of the panchayat council.

Delivering the keynote address, Dr. Chovva said that Munderikkadavu had all the characteristics to be declared as a Ramsar site. He said that bird habitat in the area, its natural resource management and potential for development as bird sanctuary were now being subjected to a study. Among the birds found in the area included sea-gulls, quails, storks, wild ducks, common teals and tuffed ducks. The report also finds that the wetland is rich with 60-odd species of fish and warns that the increasing quantity of solid and biodegradable waste in the areas could endanger the biodiversity of the area.

District panchayat vice-president T. Krishnan inaugurated the seminar. Panchayat president C. Shyamala presided over the function. District panchayat member P.K. Shabareesh and block panchayat member M.P. Muhammadali were present.

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