Season of the Aves: Here are a few places to see migratory birds this winter in Delhi NCR
Every year thousands of migratory birds look for favourable habitats to live and places which offer better nesting and feeding grounds. Winters are a time when the regions they inhabit become inhospitable and so it is time to move. Bird sanctuaries offer them a safe haven from the harsh climate and in India, especially in the national capital Delhi, one can see birds arriving in hordes.
For bird enthusiasts, it is definitely a treat to observe and watch many beautiful species of birds at close quarters. Here are the top five sanctuaries you can visit in and around the Delhi NCR:
Okhla Bird Sanctuary
The Okhla bird sanctuary houses more than 320 species and is a paradise for bird watchers. The sanctuary is home to critically endangered and vulnerable bird species like White Rumped Vulture, Sarus Crane, Bristled Grassbird and many more.
The sanctuary also showcases a variety of indigenous herbs, shrubs and grasses apart from housing about ten different species of mammals including Neelgai, Indian Mongoose and jackals. It is located in Gautam Buddh Nagar District, Noida. The best months to visit the sanctuary are from November to March, between 7:30 am to 5 pm.
Yamuna Biodiversity Park
This park is one of the most visited public places in the capital. It is a centre for learning about rare species of birds. One can see the beautiful flora and fauna and it is a conservation site for endangered plants. It is spread over more than 450 acres near Wazirabad Village on the banks of the Yamuna River. The park also displays hundreds of varieties of fruit yielding plants.
Do not forget to carry your binoculars and take pictures of the species and beautiful surroundings. At the entrance of the park small snack shops offer the visitor a quick bite and beverages to refresh themselves. The timings are from 9 am to 5 pm.
Sultanpur National Park
This is a reputed sanctuary that one must visit to observe the migratory birds that come to India from various parts of the world. The sanctuary is located in Gurgaon, Delhi NCR.
For the convenience of bird watchers, there are four ‘machans’ (watch towers) located at different points in the park. The educational interpretation centre at the park offers the visitor with complete guidance.
The sanctuary welcomes about 90 bird species every year which arrive in search of food and safe nesting locations. There is an in-house tourist complex with restaurants and a bar. The best timings to visit the park are from 7 am to 5 pm.
Aravali Biodiversity Park
Situated in the lush green Aravali Hills, the park was set up to promote and encourage conservation of the environment among people. The tourists can traverse through energizing trails and soak in the breathtaking views.
Colourful butterflies and moths make the visit magical. Apart from a variety of birds like Long-billed Pipit, Black Drongo, Lesser Whitethroat, Steppe Eagle, it also attracts wildlife like nilgai, golden jackal, Indian hare, common palm civet and Indian gray mongoose.
The park also offers one of a kind camping facility to children where they can observe and learn from nature firsthand. The park has more than 240 species of medicinal plants like Van Tulsi, Rudraksh, Brahmi, Orchids, etc. The park is located in Vasant Vihar and visitor timings are from 5:30 am to 11 am.
Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary
Located in the Southern Ridge of the Aravalli Hills on the Delhi-Haryana border, this is a hotspot for nature lovers. The wildlife sanctuary is home to a variety of birds, reptiles and mammals like Indian leopards, peacocks, Red-headed vulture, ruddy mongoose, jungle cats and more.
It is a must go-to place for those who want to refresh themselves amid the stressful city life. The park offers walks where guides provide information on the various natural treasures that the park holds.
Set in serene surroundings, one can see and hear koels, peacocks and a herd of Nilgai. One can visit the park with family and friends and a memorable experience is guaranteed. The park remains open from 9 am to 5 pm, all seven days.
A visit to these parks should definitely be on the bucket list of all those who live in and around Delhi NCR to unwind in the lap of nature and give your screen-sore eyes a break. Apart from a glimpse of the migratory birds these parks also offer a great learning for children and adults in terms of nature education and environment conservation. Fitness enthusiasts can take long walks and workout in the midst of lush greenery.