More than 960 water birds of 19 migratory bird species take shelter at Indawgyi Lake, third largest lake in Southeast Asia

Migratory birds from the northern pole of the world start taking shelter at the Indawgyi Lake which is the third largest in Southeast Asia, located in Mohnyin District of Kachin State, as of the end of October this year. So far, 966 water birds from 19 rare migratory bird species inhabit there.
Number of migratory birds arriving at the lake slightly declines this cold season, compared with more than 970 water birds from 20 species took shelter in the same period of 2021. However, greening of the environment and conservation of water resources and forest areas help the migratory birds take habitation at the lake.
Currently, some 200 Whimbrel birds, more than 30 Asian Openbill birds, some 20 little ringed plover birds, some 90 Common coots, some 200 seagull brown heads, some 90 seagull black heads, some 150 tufted ducks, five Common cranes, 10 black-bellied herons, 100 Whiskered terns and other water birds can be seen at the Indawgyi Lake. More than 3,200 domestic birds from 20 species including little equal heron, Eurasian Curlew, common moorhen, Grey-headed Swamphen and other birds inhabit at the lake.
With regard to arrivals of migratory birds at the lake, Warden of Indawgyi Wildlife Sanctuary U Maung Win said, “More than 970 water birds from 19 species have arrived at the lake this year, in comparison with 970 water birds in 20 species in the corresponding period of last year. We held the welcome to migratory birds last month by erecting the signboards for the people to conserve these bird species but hunting them. In coming December, we have planned to raise the public awareness to protect these birds at the lake to inhabit and help them return home safely. As the government strives for conservation of bird species at the Indawgyi Lake for development of ecotourism services, inhabitation of migratory birds at the lake will be attractive to local and foreign tourists. Not only the Forest Department alone but local people needs to take responsibilities for conservation of migratory birds and wildlife animals at the lake as part of efforts for the local people to earn incomes from the ecotourism services. We collect data about water birds, forest birds and fish species in monitoring the lake and conduct the quality test and depth measurement of the lake in cooperation with the Environmental Conservation Department once three months. In fact, the Indawgyi Lake is an important wetland as Ramsar site of the nation.”
The Indawgyi Lake is famous for fascinates site for local travellers with water surface views with the hills and forests in the background. It is home to more than 20,000 migratory birds and domestic bird species including 10 endangered bird species in the world, critical endangered species of turtles, fish species, crocodiles and many species of fish. It is a wetland which is famous among the foreign tourists and bird watchers. The Indawgyi Lake was designated the second Ramsar site in Myanmar apart from the Moeyungyi Lake in Bago, recognized by the Ramsar Secretariat on the World Wetlands Day which fell on 2 February 2016.
In accord with the motto of this year for the migratory birds, “Dim the Lights for Birds at Night!”, the public campaign was conducted on 10 October this year at the wetlands such as Moeyungyi, Inlay and Indawgyi lakes not to harm flying of migratory birds in lighting at night. A total of 105 water bird species and more than 400 forest birds arrive at the Indawgyi Lake on a yearly basis.
The Indawgyi Lake is located on 100 square miles of land including the wildlife sanctuary and 214.67 square miles of the watershed area, totalling 314.67 square miles. It is surrounded by more than 4,000 feet high mountain ranges to be a habitat for rare mammals, migratory birds, hibernation birds, domestic birds and many fish species. The Tonle Sap Lake in Cambodia is the largest in Southeast Asia, followed by the Laguna de Bay Lake in the Philippines and the Indawgyi Lake in Myanmar.


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