The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), one of India’s premier avian research institutes, will start operating its regional center on the campus of Wetland Research and Training Centre near Chilika Lake.
With opening up its branch in Odisha, the BNHS would be engaged in identifying the air route of the foreign birds flocking the Chilika lake during winter, sample collection, training related to bird census, publishing bird migration atlas books, examining various diseases among the birds and to review the condition of the Nalabana bird sanctuary along with counting the birds.
About Chilika Lagoon:
It is the largest coastal lagoon in India and the second largest lagoon in the world after The New Caledonian barrier reef in New Caledonia.
It is the largest wintering ground for migratory waterfowl found anywhere on the Indian sub-continent.
It is one of the hotspots of biodiversity in the country, and some rare, vulnerable and endangered species listed in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Animals inhabit in the lagoon for at least part of their life cycle.
On account of its rich biodiversity and ecological significance, Chilika was designated as the 1st “Ramsar Site” of India.
The Nalaban Island within the lagoon is notified as a Bird Sanctuary under Wildlife (Protection) Act, the National Wetlands, mangroves and coral reefs Committee of Ministry of Environment & Forests, Government of India, have also identified the lagoon as a priority site for conservation and management.
Chilika Lagoon lies in the districts of Puri, Khurda, and Ganjam of Odisha State along the eastern coast of India. It is well connected to the Chennai and Kolkata through National Highway No 5, and the Chennai Kolkata rail line passes along the western bank of the Lagoon Balugaon, with Balugaon, Chilika and Rambha being the main stations along the Western shoreline of the lagoon.
The Bombay Natural History Society, founded on 15 September 1883, is one of the largest non-governmental organizations in India engaged in conservation and biodiversity research.
BNHS is the partner of BirdLife International in India. It has been designated as a ‘Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation’ by the Department of Science and Technology.
Logo: The BNHS logo is the great hornbill.
IT consultancy firm Accenture and the Bombay Natural History Society have developed Internet of Birds platform that identifies bird species found in India using Artificial Intelligence technology, including machine learning and computer vision, from digital photos that are uploaded by the public.