Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, also known as the Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary, is a renowned bird sanctuary located in the Kothamangalam taluk of Ernakulam district in Kerala, India. It is named after Dr. Salim Ali, a prominent Indian ornithologist, and is one of the important bird sanctuaries in the region.
Spread over an area of approximately 25 square kilometers, Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is nestled on the banks of the Periyar River and encompasses diverse habitats, including evergreen forests, deciduous forests, and grasslands. The sanctuary is known for its rich avian diversity and is home to a wide variety of resident and migratory bird species.
Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is particularly famous for its population of rare and endemic birds. It has been recognized as an Important Bird Area (IBA) by BirdLife International, highlighting its significance for the conservation of avian biodiversity. The sanctuary provides a safe haven for several endangered and vulnerable bird species, including the Indian Grey Hornbill, Malabar Parakeet, Malabar Grey Hornbill, White-bellied Treepie, Sri Lanka Frogmouth, and Indian Pitta.
Birdwatching is the main activity at Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, and it attracts bird enthusiasts and nature lovers from around the world. The sanctuary offers numerous trails and pathways through the forest, allowing visitors to explore its diverse ecosystems and spot a wide variety of birds.
The best time to visit Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is during the winter months (October to February) when many migratory birds visit the sanctuary. However, the sanctuary is open throughout the year, and each season offers a unique birding experience.
In addition to birdwatching, visitors can also enjoy nature walks, photography, and boat rides along the Periyar River to appreciate the scenic beauty of the sanctuary.
Efforts are made to conserve and protect the biodiversity of Thattekad Bird Sanctuary. The Kerala Forest Department and local conservation organizations are involved in various initiatives to raise awareness, monitor bird populations, and promote sustainable tourism practices.
Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is a paradise for bird lovers, offering an opportunity to observe and appreciate the stunning avian diversity of Kerala. With its pristine natural surroundings and abundance of bird species, it provides a tranquil escape into the world of birds and nature.