Ranganathittu Wildlife Sanctuary India

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Ranganathittu Wildlife Sanctuary Karnataka

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Location: km northeast of Mysore, Mandya district, Karnataka
Area: 67 ha
Altitude: 700 m

Description of site: The wetland is a stretch of the river Kaveri (Cauvery) flowing through Ranganthittoo Sanctuary. The river flows relatively swiftly through an area of rocky terrain; there are many rocks as well as sandy islands, more or less neglected by the local human population. The larger islands are wooded and these, together with the wooded river banks, support a large breeding colony of waterbirds

Climatic conditions: Tropical monsoon climate. The area receives some benefit from both the southwest and northeast monsoons

Principal vegetation: The smaller islands have a fringe of Pandanus; the larger islands and the river banks support a variety of shrubs and trees. The islands harbouring the heronries are covered by Samania semen, Terminalia arjuna, Ponamia glabra, Salix tetrasperma, Combretum oblifolium, Polygonum barbatum, and Pandanus species

Economic and social values: A very popular area for bird-watching and other nature-oriented recreation; over 100,000 visitors have been recorded in one year. The nutrient-rich water flowing from the Sanctuary into surrounding agricultural land is highly valued by the local farmers, who also refrain from disturbing the herons, egrets, ibises and storks that forage in inundated rice fields as the birds keep their fields free from pests and snakes

Fauna: The Sanctuary is a breeding ground for as many as 14 species of waterbirds, including Phalacrocorax carbo, P. fuscicollis, P. niger, Anhinga melanogaster, Nycticorax nycticorax, Ardeola grayii, Bubulcus ibis, Egretta garzetta, E. intermedia, E. albs, Ardea purpurea, Anastomus oscitans, Threskiornis melanocephalus, and Platalea leucorodia. The large number of A. oscitans is particularly noteworthy. The majority of birds begin breeding in June though several birds such as P. fuscicollis, P. niger, A. purpurea, and P. leucorodia nest between January and April.

Several birds of prey such as Haliastur Indus, Milvus migrans, grans, Circus aeruginosus, Spilornis cheela, Pandion haliaeetus, and Ichthyophaga ichthyaetus frequent the sanctuary. Birds such as Esacus recurvirostris, Vanellus indicus, and Sterna aurantia regularly nest on the rocks exposed in midstream. A colony of cliff swallow (Hirundofluvicola) regularly nest in the sanctuary. During the summer of 1991, a few pairs of Mycteria leucocephala were observed nesting in the sanctuary for the first time. A large colony of fruit bats (Pteropus giganteus) roost on trees fringing the river on the main island. A healthy population of marshcrocodile (Crocodylus palustris) thrives in the deep pools between the islets. A family of common otters (Lutra lutra) have been sighted in the past


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