Guwahati: The Kaziranga National Park & Tiger Reserve authority carried out the 3rd Annual Waterfowl Census of Kaziranga on February 6 and 7, 2021. The major objectives of the exercise were to record and estimate waterfowl and winter migratory birds and to monitor and assess the health of wetlands, a release from the office of P Sivakumar, Director, Kaziranga National Park & Tiger Reserve said.
To carry out this census exercise, 52 wetlands across the Kaziranga Tiger Reserve were identified and 36 seasoned birders were involved in the exercise as enumerators. Counting of birds was carried out from 06 AM to 4 PM on February 6, 2021.
The data gathered during the exercise were compiled on February 7, 2021. The results were declared today, i.e., February 9, 2021, by Amit Sahai, IFS, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Wildlife).
A total of 93,491 birds from 112 different species belonging to 22 families were counted during the exercise, the release added.
“The highest number of species (26) are from family Anatidae, which the family of Ducks and Geese. The top three species counted by number are Eurasian Coot, Bar-headed Geese and Common Teal. Of the 112 waterfowl species found in Kaziranga, 58 are migratory species visiting Kaziranga from different parts of the world including Europe, Central Asia and East Asia,” the release said.
The total number of birds increased from 34,284 in 2020 to 93,491 in 2021, which amounts to a rise of about 175%. The maximum increase in several birds was witnessed in Laokhowa-Burhachapori Wildlife Sanctuary where the number of birds increased from 9,244 individuals to 71,902 individuals, said the release.
“This rise in the number of birds visiting Kaziranga can be attributed to improved habitat management and water conservation measures carried out by the Kaziranga Tiger Reserve authority,” the release added.