Vellode Bird Sanctuary – A Safe Heaven for All Birds

Located in the Erode district of Tamil Nadu this hospitable sanctuary is home to about 150 migratory and nonmigratory species of birds. With tons of water and agricultural land nearby thousands of native and migratory birds visit this wetland every year. Though the total land area within the sanctuary is very little the flora present there is equipped with enough features to accommodate all visiting birds. Most of the notable developments in the vegetation present there are because of human intervention and management. The Babul tree plantation drive of the 80s has played a major role in building green belts of comfort in the sanctuary. Wetland conservation efforts of the forest department from early 2000 have also contributed to this cause.

The 77-hectare sanctuary founded in the year 1996 is more of a project by the people. All the villages in the periphery of the sanctuary have contributed greatly to the creation of such a place and also to its upkeep. Some notable recent effort by the villagers is their decision to not burst crackers during Diwali and they have upheld their decisions for almost two decades. This initiative taken by the people in the surrounding villages has been a morale booster to all other villages and cities in the state. The concern of people towards the sanctuary shows the world how a united cause can even change nature.

Flowing adjacent to Vellode the lower Bhavani canal is the lifeline of the sanctuary that makes sure the water level remains consistent all year round. This phenomenon helps many species stay in the sanctuary throughout their life without having to leave the protected lands.

Throughout the duration of the lockdown, the sanctuary has been modified a few times, and places inside the sanctuary restored for the accommodation of an even larger number of birds. The changes were also made with the interest of tourists in mind. The efforts taken have helped the local economy grow and the people who visit the sanctuary are also happy because of the improvisations in the infrastructure.

The plans haven’t stopped there, both the local community and the Erode Forest department have many more ideas and are hoping to improve the sanctuary into something even better. The sanctuary too has helped the human race in many ways. One such way is by creating a better ecosystem so that we can cultivate more crops. The bird droppings have enriched the nearby ayacut lands with minerals and nutrients and the yields have increased significantly as reported by the farmers.

The Vellore bird sanctuary is an icon of inspiration to any conservation or restoration project because it has proved that humans can coexist with nature even in the age of technology. The headstrong warriors protecting the sanctuary as their own treasure chest prove that love for all life still exists among humans. The officials who have brought illegal poaching to a still have earned the respect of not just the people living there but the respect of all the wildlife in the area. This is not an achievement but just the start of a revolution.


Published by LakesOfIndia

Lakes of India is an E.F.I initiative aimed at sensitizing the larger public on freshwater habitats across the country. A blog platform where one can read about lakes across India. You can become a guest blogger to write about a lake in your hometown and initiate an action to protect that lake.

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